Halloween is right around the corner, and kids and parents are gearing up for the night by finding the perfect costumes, stocking up on candy supplies, and planning spooktacular parties. For many people, Halloween is one of the most anticipated holidays of the year, but the excitement of this time of year can also sometimes make kids – and even adults – not as careful as they typically may be.
Some frightening statistics:
Due to the enormous amount of increase in both pedestrian and vehicle traffic that occurs, it’s reported that:
- In the U.S., October ranked #2 in motor vehicle deaths by month.
- Twice as many child pedestrians are killed on Halloween night than any other night of the year.
And children aren’t the only ones at risk –
- For adults who consider driving after having a few drinks at a Halloween party, consider this: 44% of fatal crashes during Halloween weekend involved a driver or motorcyclist with a BAC of 0.08 or higher.
This Halloween Safety Infographic from SafeKids.org has some great tips on staying safe on Halloween night:
(Click to enlarge)
There are many ways you can help keep your children, your party guests and yourself safe on Halloween, when accidents and injuries are more likely to occur. Having a safe and happy Halloween is a goal that can easily be achieved by practicing these good safety habits:
With the Kids
- An adult should accompany all children under the age of 12 at all times when trick-or-treating. Older children who are allowed to trick-or-treat without adult supervision should:
- Travel in groups and stick to familiar neighborhoods and areas
- Carry a cell phone for quick communication, and agree on a specific time to return home before heading out
- Use a flashlight and/or other reflective or glow-in-the-dark gear.
- Stick to streets that are well-lit and always use the sidewalk.
- Be extremely cautious and look both ways before crossing the street.
- Watch out for cars, especially ones backing out of driveways or turning.
- Only approach homes with the lights on.
Pedestrian traffic increases enormously on Halloween night, so here are a few tips for traveling motorists:
- Slow down and be extra alert and cautious when driving through residential neighborhoods.
- Enter and exit driveways slowly and carefully, keeping a close eye out for travelling trick-or-treaters.
- Peak trick-or-treating hours are between 5:30 PM and 9:30 PM, so drive slower, turn your headlights on, and be especially alert for kids and pedestrians during those hours.
If someone is injured on your property, you could be held liable. To avoid any incidents occurring in or around your home, do the following:
- Remove any items from your front yard or porch that someone could trip over (i.e. bicycles, garden hoses, lawn ornaments, etc.), even if you are not participating in trick-or-treating.
- Make sure your home is well-lit and your front door is easy to get to.
- Check all outdoor lights and replace any burnt-out bulbs with new ones.
- Make any necessary repairs to broken or loose steps, rails or walkways.
- Keep pets properly restrained or out of sight to avoid any possible incidents of jumping on or biting a trick-or-treater.
At a Party
Halloween is undoubtedly one of the biggest party nights of the year, and adults often celebrate by getting into the “spirit”. So if you plan on attending a Halloween bash that serves alcohol, consider this: If you choose to drink and drive, you could end up paying the price with a DUI, or worse – someone’s life.
- In the U.S., 44% of fatal crashes during Halloween weekend involved a driver or motorcyclist with a BAC of 0.08 or higher.
- 23% of pedestrian fatalities on Halloween night include a drunk driver.
- Do not continue to serve a guest that has had too much to drink. Enlist the help of a sober driver or call a cab to get them home safely.
- Do not serve alcohol to anyone under the age of 21, period. You could be held responsible for any accident caused by an intoxicated minor that left your home that night.
So make the most of your Halloween season by keeping it a fun, safe and happy holiday for you, your kids and your party guests! We wish everyone a scarily safe, and ghoulishly good night!