• Lizzie Charbonneau

How to Stay Safe this Halloween!

Halloween is such a fun time of year!

Kids get to transform into whatever they want and get unlimited candy!

What could be better?


BUT Halloween is also the most dangerous day for child pedestrians.*


So, how can we keep Halloween fun and safe?


Two children wearing black witches hats with jackolantern trick-or-treat baskets in front of their faces

In this post, we’ll talk about

  • visibility: can cars see my child, and can my child see cars?

  • pumpkins: carving and lighting

  • homes: how to make your home safer for trick-or-treaters

  • trick-or-treating: best practices

This post includes Amazon affiliate links.


Visibility


The two most important things to consider for Halloween safety are:

  • Can cars see my child?

  • Can my child see cars?


Can cars see my child?


child in black witches costume
This costume will be difficult to see as it gets dark

It’s night, and kids are running around, often wearing dark costumes. It’s no wonder that a car might not see one.


Here are a few ways your child can make it easier for cars to see them:


  • Stay on well-lit roads.

  • Bring a flashlight, glow stick, or headlamp.

  • Wear a brightly colored costume.

  • Add reflective tape to the costume.

  • Only cross at crosswalks.





Can my child see cars?

These costumes have poor visibility

Lots of costumes include masks, which can obscure a kid’s vision. Add to that: kids get distracted on Halloween, excited to run after friends or to the best candy house. It might be hard for them to see nearby cars.


Here are a few ways to make sure your kid can see cars:


  • Use face paint instead of masks. Masks often block peripheral vision.

  • Ensure costume accessories are not blocking your kid’s eyesight.

  • Remind your kid to “stop, look, and listen,” walk across the street, and walk near busy roads.


Pumpkins


Carving


Pumpkin carving is probably my favorite part of Halloween! I love getting creative with ghoulish faces 🎃. As with any activity that involves knives, it has inherent dangers.

Here are some ways to ensure your kid stays safe while carving a pumpkin:


  • Do not use standard kitchen knives. They are heavy, sharp, and can get stuck in a pumpkin.

  • Use pumpkin carving kits instead. The slim, serrated knives cut easily through pumpkins but much less easily through the skin.

  • For young children, have them draw the pumpkin face, and you do all the cutting.

  • For older children, be aware of their abilities with knives and supervise accordingly.


Lighting


  • Use an LED candle rather than a real candle with a flame. A flame in a pumpkin is not only a potential fire hazard for your home but also for children with trailing costumes walking by.

  • If you do use a real candle in your pumpkin, do not leave the pumpkin unattended, and make sure it’s far from where people will be walking.


Your Home





If trick-or-treaters come to your home, here are a few ways to ensure your house and treats are inviting and safe!

  • Remove tripping and slipping hazards, including raking up leaves along the path.

  • Ensure your path and door are well-lit.

  • Keep your pets away from the door. Even if they’re friendly, they may feel threatening to some kids.

  • Use store-bought, individually packaged candy.

  • Provide options for kids with allergies, like fruit-based candy or small toys.



Trick-or-Treating best practices




Finally, a few basic best practices for trick-or-treating itself!


  • If your kid is under 12, make sure there is an adult with their trick-or-treat group.

  • Give your kid a bracelet or name tag with their name, your name, and your phone number in case they get separated from their group.

  • Only trick-or-treat at homes that are well-lit and have their front light on.

  • Remind your kid never to go inside a car or home to get a treat

  • Remember safe eating practices for kids under 4: no popcorn, nuts, chewy candy, etc.

  • Toss opened or spoiled treats.


Have a wonderful and safe Halloween!!!



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