For children, Halloween is a magical night where they get to become anything they want and go around asking their neighbors for free candy. Sadly, it’s also one of the most dangerous nights of the year for children. Staying safe this Halloween should be at the forefront of your mind, and those of us here at My Emergency Room 24/7 in San Marcos have put together this list of Halloween safety tips to help you out. Let’s work together to keep your little specters, spooks, and spider-men safe.
Driver Halloween Safety Tips
Typically, children celebrate Halloween by going door to door asking for candy. Because of this, we believe that safe driving is a huge part of staying safe this Halloween.
- Pay Attention to the Road – Inattentive driving leads to far too many accidents, so put away the distractions and pay attention to what’s going on around you.
- Slow Down – Plan a little extra time to get where you’re going on Halloween and slow down. Using slower speeds while driving and for entering and exiting driveways and alleys can help keep children safe.
- Prepare for More Pedestrian Traffic – There will be more people on the streets on Halloween than on a typical fall evening, and many of them will be children. Pay attention to people walking near your driving route.
- Pay Extra Attention in Residential Areas – Children in residential areas are likely to be excited about trick-or-treating, and may not pay enough attention to traffic. Be aware of this and keep an eye out for pedestrians entering the roadway.
- Check and Double Check Intersections – Some children may be wearing dark costumes, making them difficult to see. Look at intersections multiple times to see if there are any children who may enter the intersection unexpectedly.
Trick-or-Treating Safety Tips
Trick-or-treaters are, of course, the second group of people who need to be extra aware on Halloween night. Therefore, our list of Halloween safety tips has to include a section just for them.
- Avoid Busy Roads – Drivers on busy roads may not remember to watch for increased pedestrian traffic, making these roads more dangerous than side streets for trick-or-treaters.
- Plan a Route Beforehand – Take the time to create a planned route that begins and ends at your house. Your route should circle back to your house and be short enough that the children can walk the route on their own.
- Remember Adult Supervision – If you have kids who are under the age of 12, they should be accompanied by an adult while trick-or-treating.
- Stay Where It’s Light – Light helps keep you visible, so plan to trick-or-treat before it gets dark or on a route that has enough street lights to increase visibility.
- Check Each Child’s Candy – It’s an unfortunate necessity that you will need to check the candy your children bring home for signs of tampering. If some of the candy is open or not in its original package, it should be discarded.
Costume Safety Tips
Safe costumes can greatly increase the safety of your child while they are trick-or-treating. It doesn’t matter what they have chosen to dress up as, you should make sure that their costume can help keep them safe.
- Make Sure Costumes are Fire Resistant – Many jack-o-lanterns have candles inside of them, and dragging costume pieces can catch fire all too easily. Making sure that costumes are made from fire-resistant materials can greatly reduce this danger.
- Keep Your Kids Visible – Visibility needs change depending on when you take your children trick-or-treating. If you go before sundown, bright colors are often enough. After dark, however, children should be equipped with flashlights and/or glow sticks and have reflective tape placed on their costumes.
- Get the Right Costume Sizes – Costumes that are too long and/or drag on the ground can create a tripping hazard for the child wearing them and others.
- Use Safe Masks or Face Paint – Some costumes need a mask to complete them, but many masks can make breathing difficult and restrict a child’s field of vision. Non-toxic face paint is better than masks for this reason. If a mask is necessary, make sure that eye and mouth holes are big enough to allow for sufficient field of vision and breathing.
- Get Comfortable Shoes – Your children will likely be walking farther than they are used to. Good, comfortable shoes can help prevent sore feet and blisters.
- Use Safe Props/Accessories – There are always costumes that need props to complete them. Making sure these props are made from soft foam or plastic can help prevent injuries.
Your kids shouldn’t have to worry about their safety this Halloween; that’s your job. Let them enjoy a night of fun and free candy by preparing ahead of time and following these safety tips. Make staying safe this Halloween your number one priority, and remember that if an accident does happen, My Emergency Room 24/7 in San Marcos is ready to take care of it.