Kids love the magic of Halloween: Trick-or-treating, classroom parties and trips to a neighborhood haunted house. But for moms and dads, often there is a fine line between Halloween fun and safety concerns, especially when it comes to road and pedestrian safety.
In 2016, 7,330 pedestrians died in traffic or non-traffic incidents, according to Injury Facts. Non-traffic incidents include those occurring on driveways, in parking lots or on private property.
NSC research reveals about 18% of these deaths occurred at road crossings or intersections. Lack of visibility because of low lighting at night also plays a factor in these deaths.
Here's a scary statistic: Children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than on any other day of the year. In 2017, October ranked No. 2 in motor vehicle deaths by month, with 3,700. July is No. 1, with 3,830 deaths.
To help ensure adults and children have a safe holiday, the American Academy of Pediatrics has compiled a list ofHalloween safety tips. Before Halloween arrives, be sure to choose a costume that won't cause safety hazards.
- All costumes, wigs and accessories should be fire-resistant
- Avoid masks, which can obstruct vision
- If children are allowed out after dark, fasten reflective tape to their costumes and bags, or give them glow sticks
- When buying Halloween makeup, make sure it is nontoxic and always test it in a small area first
- Remove all makeup before children go to bed to prevent skin and eye irritation
When They're on the Prowl
- A responsible adult should accompany young children on the neighborhood rounds
- If your older children are going alone, plan and review a route acceptable to you
- Agree on a specific time children should return home
- Teach your children never to enter a stranger's home or car
- Instruct children to travel only in familiar, well-lit areas and stick with their friends
- Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home
- Children and adults are reminded to put electronic devices down, keep heads up and walk, don't run, across the street
Safety Tips for Motorists
NSC offers these additional safety tips for parents – and anyone who plans to be on the road during trick-or-treat hours:
- Watch for children walking on roadways, medians and curbs
- Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully
- At twilight and later in the evening, watch for children in dark clothing
- Discourage new, inexperienced drivers from driving on Halloween
Source: National Safety Council