Halloween is a fun time of year for children and adults alike.
Unfortunately, it can also be a dangerous time.
According to Safe Kids Worldwide, children are twice as likely to be struck and killed by a vehicle on Halloween than on any other day of the year
With a little planning and increased awareness, drivers, parents and trick-or-treaters can prevent Halloween tragedies and ensure an enjoyable evening for all.
We turned to AAA and Safe Kids Worldwide for these 16 safety tips for drivers, parents and trick-or-treaters:
- Be extra alert 5:30 – 9:30pm, the most popular trick-or-treating hours.
- Drive slower than normal in residential neighborhoods. Drive at least 5 mph below the posted speed limit to give yourself extra time to react if a child darts out in front of you.
- Watch for children walking, particularly on the street, curbs and medians.
- Enter and exit driveways carefully.
- Turn on your headlights to increase your visibility. Using your headlights, even during daylight hours, makes it easier for pedestrians and other drivers to see you.
- Set ground rules. Talk with your children about how long they can be out, where they can go and what will be done with the treats they receive.
- Accompany your children, especially if they’re under 12. Surprisingly, 12% of children five years of age or younger are allowed to trick-or-treat alone (Safe Kids).
- Make your kids visible. Decorate costumes and bag with reflective tape and stickers and, as much as possible, use light colored costumes. Have them carry light sticks or flashlights to help them see — and to help drivers see them.
- Make sure your kids can see easily. Masks can limit eyesight, so consider makeup and hats, instead. If your child is wearing a hat, make sure it fits well and doesn’t slip down over his eyes.
- Use flame-retardant costumes.
- Walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, stay as far to the side of the street as possible and walk facing traffic.
- Cross safely. Cross streets only at corners — never mid-block or from between parked vehicles — and look both ways and listen for approaching vehicles before crossing.
- Put down the phone. Eliminate distractions while you’re out trick-or-treating with your kids.
- Make sure props, such as swords and canes, are not sharp.
- Tell your children to not eat treats until they get home.
- Stick to the familiar. Stop only at well-lit homes and never enter a stranger’s home or garage.
Happy Halloween from all of us at Oil Can Henry’s!