Halloween is known as a scary holiday, but sometimes not for the right reason. With potential dangers such as pedestrian accidents, falls, burns and poisonings, families should keep safety top-of-mind to ensure this holiday is a safe one.
On average, children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a vehicle and killed on Halloween than on any other day of the year. Drivers need to be extra alert as there will be more children on the streets and sidewalks – and those kids may be focused on gathering candy and the excitement of the holiday rather than being careful while crossing streets.
“Safe Kids Kansas urges drivers to slow down and pay close attention on neighborhood roads to make Halloween more safe and enjoyable for everyone," added Cherie Sage, State Director for Safe Kids Kansas.
“Kids need safety instruction before they go out trick-or-treating,” says Sage. "Many kids will be out trick-or-treating while it is dark when it is more difficult for drivers to see them. There are several easy and effective rules that parents can share with kids to help reduce their risk of injury.
"For example, children younger than age 12 should not be alone crossing streets on Halloween without an adult. If older kids are mature enough to go trick-or-treating without adult supervision, parents should make sure they go in a group and stick to a planned route with good lighting."
While it’s a good idea for children to have a cell phone with them in case of an emergency, remind them to pay attention to their surroundings, and not be distracted from hazards because they are texting or talking on the phone.
Pedestrian safety is a main concern on Halloween, but parents and kids should also be careful when dealing with candy.
"While kids never want to wait to dive into their candy, it is best to check sweets for signs of tampering before children are allowed to eat them," says Sage. “Remind children to only eat treats in original and unopened wrappers."