The facts about Halloween safety can be eye-opening, as it is the one night of the year children and party-goers are out having a good time, but according to safekids.org, on average children are more than twice as likely to get hit by a car or fatally hurt on Halloween, more than any other day of the year, so safety is imperative to ensure a good time and everyone comes home safe.
The following information came from the Albuquerque Police Department Northeast Command, who put out a quick list of tips that parents should take into consideration this holiday, as well as adding some tips from safekids.org.
- Have a Plan in Case You Get Separated
Pick a familiar area to trick-or-treat, have a pre-planned meeting spot or a way to call each other. Use the Nextdoor candy map for easy access spots to candy. Teach your children never to enter a stranger’s home or car. Maybe try to go out with a group of families.
- Stay Bright and Well-lit
This way you can be seen by those driving on the road. Carry glow sticks or flashlights, use reflective tape or stickers on costumes and bags, and wear light colors to help kids see and be seen by drivers. Remind kids to cross the street at corners or crosswalks. Be sure to stay on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk. If there isn’t a sidewalk, walk at the edge of the road and in the direction of oncoming traffic.
- Don’t Trick-or-Treat Alone
Trick-or treat with others and take note of each other’s costumes. Also, always join kids under age 12 for trick-or-treating and go up to each door with them to ensure their safety.
- Check Candy Before Eating and throw away any unwrapped or open candy. Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home. If your child has an allergy, be sure to check their loot and maybe exchange it with other kids who don’t have one. Also, after a night of sugar-filled treats, and if you don’t want to deal with a cavity later, make sure they brush after their candy intake.
- Slow down and be alert. Kids are excited on Halloween and may dart into the street. Turn on headlights early in the day to spot kids from further away. Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully.
- When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls. Choose face paint over masks when possible. Full face masks can limit children’s vision, but it is probably a good idea to use COVID masks to interact with people at their doors. If parents decide to use makeup or face paint, try to find non-toxic products. When using face paint, make sure a child is not allergic by testing out a small patch beforehand a few days prior. Choosing a brightly colored costume can be better than a dark one. Costume recalls do happen, and parents can check on costumes they bought or are about to buy at cpsc.gov/recalls.
- Pumpkin carving seems like a great family-friendly activity, but according to the CPSC, approximately 44% of Halloween-related injuries occur from pumpkin carving. Some of these pumpkin carving kits have poorly made cutting utensils that can harm more than help, so maybe have the kids help in other ways, like having them just draw what will be carved on by parents, or help with cleaning the pumpkin instead.
Additionally, Albuquerque Fire Rescue has released its list of safety tips to help eliminate fire hazards during the Halloween season.