Between crowds, cars and questionable candy, scary fun can turn into a situation that’s actually threatening for children during Halloween celebrations.
The National Safety Council reports 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. Although tampering with candy is isolated, it can be an additional worry for parents. This year’s pandemic also prompts concerns over the need for social distancing and the potential for spreading COVID-19.
Planning with safety precautions in mind can help ensure a happy Halloween experience.
Here are five safety tips:
Plan your evening: Agree on a well-lit trick-or-treat route in advance and set a time for ending the night.
Increase visibility to reduce the risk of getting hit by a car: Flashlights, reflective tape and glowsticks can help drivers see pedestrians. Do not rely on only a cell phone for illumination when walking at night.
Beware of strangers’ homes: Approach only those homes with porch lights on to indicate that trick-or-treaters are welcome. Never go inside to collect candy.
Stay away from crowds: Maintain at least six feet of space between yourself and others instead of congregating together to go house to house. Consider setting out a bowl of candy instead of greeting children in-person. Wash hands in hot, soapy water, use hand sanitizer and wear a mask in keeping with current COVID-19 prevention guidelines.
Check treats before consumption: Look at the treats collected to be sure all are packaged, age appropriate and allergen-free.
Although Mischief Night on Oct. 30 and Halloween the following night are characterized by both tricks and treats, criminal offenses like vandalism should not be part of the celebration. Report any suspicious activity to the police.
Find safe alternatives to trick-or-treating and additional tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) here.