10/25/2011 12:49:00 PM Editorial: Have fun, but stay safe while trick or treating
Lynda Duffy Former Editor
Monday is Halloween. Drivers will be sharing the road with miniature ghouls and goblins when children of all ages take to the streets to trick-or-treat. Homeowners should prepare for trick-or-treaters as well by checking their properties for hazards.
While we encourage all to have fun, we offer these following tips for a safe Halloween -
Trick-or-treaters should wear light-colored clothing that's short enough to prevent tripping. Add reflective tape to the sides, front and back of the costume.
Make sure children can see well through facemasks. Makeup rather than masks should actually be worn to assure that children have a clear view of their surroundings.
Trick-or-treaters should always be accompanied by an adult or travel in a group.
Go out in the daylight and carry a flashlight in the event of a delay. Although it's best for children to complete those trick-or-treat rounds during daylight, some find it more fun to stay out later. Drivers need to be particularly careful after dark and when driving either over a hill or around a curve where visibility may be limited. Turn on those high beams for greater visibility.
When trick-or-treating, stay within your neighborhood and visit only homes with which you are familiar.
Watch for traffic. Trick-or-treaters may become caught up in the excitement of the day and not be as careful as they should. They should always cross at corners and look both ways before crossing. However, drivers need to keep a careful eye on the road and on the sidewalk, in the event that anyone darts out from between parked cars.
Children should stay on the sidewalk. If a sidewalk is not available, walk facing the line of traffic.
Only give and accept wrapped or packaged candy. Children should be instructed not to eat any unwrapped candy or treats until they return home. Parents should carefully examine the contents of those Halloween bags prior to children consuming those goodies. Anything that appears questionable or unfamiliar should be discarded.
Keep costumed children away from pets. The pet may not recognize the child and become frightened.
Avoid hard plastic or wooden props such as daggers and swords. Substitute these props with foam rubber, which is soft and flexible.
Homeowners should clear their yards of anything that can be tripped over. Be sure to have a front porch or walkway light on. The more lights, the better.