Halloween Safety Tips
While Halloween can be one of the most enjoyable holidays for families, families should also keep in mind the following safety tips to also help keep the holiday safe and reduce the risk of serious or even potentially catastrophic injuries.
Parents should ensure that young children’s costumes do not pose a safety hazard. Even older teens and adults who choose to dress up for Halloween should also follow these safety tips:
- Avoid costumes with loose, dangly material, especially if the wearer will be walking near open flames such as a bonfire, fireplace, or jack-o-lantern. Many costumes are made of flammable materials, so before purchasing a costume or costume materials, it is also important to confirm that the materials are non-flammable or flame-resistant.
- Ideally, choose bright colors for costumes, especially if you are going out trick-or-treating. If wearing a darker costume for trick-or-treating, consider adding reflective tape to the costume to help make wearers more visible to motorists.
- Consider using face paint rather than masks for a costume, as masks can restrict visibility. Also make sure that any face paint or make-up used on children is child-safe.
- Make sure that costumes do not present a tripping hazard, such as having fabric that drapes all the way to the ground. Also consider wearing comfortable, sturdy footwear to help reduce the risk of tripping.
When carving jack-o-lanterns, especially with younger children, important safety tips to follow include:
- Always have adult supervision when children participate in pumpkin carving, especially when knives are out.
- Carve pumpkins in a clean, spacious, brightly-lit area.
- Younger children should not be allowed to handle knives. Instead, they can participate in carving by picking out and drawing designs or scooping out the pumpkin.
- If you are going to light a jack-o-lantern, consider using an LED candle rather than an open flame candle.
Trick or Treating
Safety tips for trick-or-treating include:
- Always trick-or-treat in groups. Children under the age of 12 should be supervised by an adult.
- Only visit homes with their front lights on. If a home gives you a bad feeling, just skip it.
- Try to finish trick-or-treating before sundown, especially with younger children. If you are out after dark, carry flashlights or lanterns.
- Stay on sidewalks wherever available. If a street does not have a sidewalk, walk along the far edge of the street, facing oncoming traffic.
- Only cross at intersections and marked crosswalks. Never step out into the street from in between parked or stopped vehicles.
- Never step out in front of an oncoming vehicle. Do not assume that the driver has seen you or will yield the right of way.
- Inspect children’s candy after getting home for any unwrapped or homemade candy. Children should only be allowed to eat commercially manufactured candy. Also monitor children’s candy intake to avoid overconsumption.
If you are driving on Halloween night, some important tips to remember include:
- Drive much slower than you normally would, especially when driving in residential neighborhoods. Excited children may not stop to look for traffic and may suddenly dart out into the street.
- Exercise caution when approaching intersections or crosswalks, as pedestrians may be crossing.
- Avoid distractions while driving, such as using your cell phone.
- Never drive while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
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