Halloween Safety Tips

trick_or_treaters_by_rudeturtle-d4bfyqv

Halloween is a wonderful time of year, especially in our neighborhood. Houses are decked out with ghosts, ghouls, and goblins, and children in costume eagerly take to the sidewalks in the hopes of filling their bags and buckets with candy. As you get ready to celebrate, please keep an eye out for our littlest pedestrians and follow these safety tips from the Metropolitan Police Department to ensure they have a safe, fun evening:

Costume Safety

  • Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.
  • Choose face paint and makeup whenever possible instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.
  • Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
  • When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls.

Pedestrian Safety

  • Children should cross the street at the corner, using crosswalks, and not between parked cars. Stay on sidewalks, and don’t walk in the street.
  • Put electronic devices down and keep heads up. Walk, don’t run, across the street.
  • Keep an eye out for cars that are turning or backing up.
  • Motorists should drive slowly and watch carefully for children. Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. so be especially alert for kids during those hours.
  • Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways. Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians, and on curbs. Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.
  • Drive slowly, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic, and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distance.

General Safety

  • Children under the age of 12 should not be alone at night without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, they should stick to familiar areas that are well lit and trick-or-treat in groups.
  • Many police districts, community groups, business associations, and others host Halloween parties. Parents should consider these as a safe alternative to door-to-door trick-or-treating for their children.
  • Children should never go into homes – stay on the porch or stoop when asking for treats.
  • Children should avoid homes that don’t have their outside lights turned on.
  • Children should know their home phone number and their parents’ cell phone numbers, when applicable.
  • Children should have their names and addresses attached to their costumes.

image “Trick-or-Treaters” by rudeturtle is used under a Creative Commons license.

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