Keeping Kids Safe on Halloween
Pedestrian safety tips for little ghosts and goblins
Halloween is an exciting night for children; however danger can lurk at every corner and crosswalk. With the days getting shorter, children are likely to be trick-or-treating in the dark when it is harder for drivers to see them and the excitement of the holiday can make everyone less cautious. Prepare your ghosts and goblins for a safe night of fun by reviewing the following tips from Dayton Children’s and Safe Kids Greater Dayton:
- Instruct children to travel only in familiar areas and along a pre-established route. Parents should have a copy of the planned route at home.
- Restrict trick-or-treating visits to homes with porch or outside lights illuminated. Instruct children never to enter a home or an apartment building unless accompanied by an adult.
- Children should wear light colored costumes, should have reflective elements or attach reflective tape to dark costumes.
- Remove breakable items or obstacles including tools, ladders and children’s toys from steps, lawn and porch. Keep jack-o-lanterns lit with candles away from landings or doorsteps where costumes might brush against the flame.
- Avoid giving choking hazards including small toys, gum, peanuts and hard candy to small children. Consider giving out non-edible treats, such as pencils and stickers.
- Tell children to bring treats home before eating them. Parents should check treats to ensure that items have not been tampered with and are safely sealed.
- Apply face paint or cosmetics directly to the face. Makeup is safer than a loose-fitting mask that can obstruct vision. Make sure any masks worn fit securely. Cut eyeholes large enough for full vision.
- Dress children in costumes short enough to avoid tripping with shoes that are appropriately sized. Adult shoes are not safe for trick-or-treaters. The larger size makes it easier for them to trip and fall.
- Don’t let children carry flexible knives, swords or other props. Anything they carry could injure them if they fall.
- Tell children to stay on the sidewalk at all times. Stay off roads and cross streets at crosswalks or well-lit intersections. Monitor younger children when they cross the street.
If you are a driver, be extra alert in neighborhoods, avoid distractions and remember that children may not be able to see you through their costumes. Remember, children are excited and may move in unpredictable ways.