Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween is a fun time for kids, but it is also an important time to be extra vigilant for possible safety hazards so that your children have a fun and safe Halloween. Some tips to make Halloween safe include:

Parent Tips

  • Decorations are the first thing to ignite in 900 reported home fires each year. Two of five of these fires were started by a candle. Use flashlights as alternatives to candles or torch lights when decorating walkways and yards.
  • Do not use open flame candles in jack-o-lanterns. Commercially available battery lights are much safer and do not pose a fire hazard.
  • Tell your children to stay away from open flames. Be sure they know how to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire.
  • An adult should always accompany children under 12 years of age.
  • Parents should never let their children carve a pumpkin unsupervised.
  • Do not hand out homemade or unwrapped candies to children.
  • Urge your children to wait until they get home and you have had a chance to inspect the contents before eating any treats. Don't send them out on an empty stomach.
  • Parents should plan a route for your child to use while trick-or-treating and set an early return time for your child.
  • To welcome trick-or-treaters, switch on your porch lights or any exterior lights.

Trick or Treat Tips

  • Do not go inside anyone's house. Remain on the stoop or porch at all times.
  • Do not go into a stanger's automobile.
  • Do not take shortcuts through backyards, alleys, or parks.
  • Walk don't run.
  • When crossing the street look both ways. Do not cross in between cars.
  • Always use the sidewalk.
  • Trick-or-treat on well-lit streets within your neighborhood.
  • Children should always travel in a group.
  • Use the buddy system, and make sure you have at least one buddy with you the entire evening.
  • When you return home, have an adult examine and discard all candies that are not factory sealed or wrapped by the candy manufacturer. Never eat homemade or unwrapped treats.
  • Children should carry and know how to use a cell phone in case of an emergency.

Costume Tips

  • Only purchase and use flame retardant costumes.
  • Children should wear white, reflective clothing, or use reflective tape and carry either a flashlight or glow stick.
  • Costumes should fit properly avoid loose or baggy costumes.
  • Avoid any type of open flame while wearing costume.
  • Encourage children to wear face paint as oppose to a mask. Face paint should be non-toxic and meet FDA standards.
  • If mask is worn, make sure that the eye, mouth and nose openings are large enough to ensure adequate breathing and full range vision.
  • Children should never carry sharp objects. Ensure that all props are made of material that is flexible and non realistic looking.
  • Materials made of 100% polyester or mod acrylics are best for making homemade costumes. They are less flammable.
  • REMEMBER - A flame-retardant costume does not mean that it is fire proof. Always keep your costume away from any type of open flame or other heat sources.

Tips for Motorists

  • Be aware of children darting out between parked automobiles.
  • Watch for children walking on roadways, medians and curbs.
  • Use caution while entering and exiting driveways.
  • During twilight and evening hours be mindful of children in dark costumes.
  • Never use your cell phone while driving.
  • Discourage teens from driving on Halloween. There are too many hazards and distractions for inexperienced drivers.

Sources: National Fire Protection Agency (www.nfpa.org) and Safe Kids Worldwide (www.safekids.org)

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