Halloween brings excitement and joy to many families each fall season. Family traditions, pumpkin carving, and hot apple cider can be a wonderful pastime for friends and family alike. It is also the most dangerous night of the year for pedestrians and can be rife with unexpected dangers for children. Most injuries occur between 4:00 pm and 10:00 pm, peak Trick or Treat time for many families. To keep your children safe and ensure a Happy Halloween, here are a few simple precautions families can take to make sure the night is safe and fun for all:
- Make sure your sidewalk and walkway are well illuminated to prevent trips from trick-or-treaters.
- Consider face paint instead of masks so children can see where they are going. Masks can obstruct vision, particularly at night for young children. Get out the hypoallergenic makeup and decorate your goblin’s face for a fun evening that won’t interfere with your little one’s vision.
- Make sure you and your child are visible with glow sticks, bracelets, flashlights, and reflective tape. As the nights get darker, it is important that kids and adults are visible to drivers.
- Check costumes to ensure there are no trip hazards. Capes, dresses, and even princess costumes can be trimmed to ankle length to prevent trips and falls.
- Stay on sidewalks and use crosswalks whenever possible. Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.
- Supervise young children during trick-or-treating. Make the evening fun for the whole family by heading out into the neighborhood together. Never let children under the age of 12 trick-or-treat alone.
- Steer clear of flames! Those jack-o-lanterns can ignite costumes quickly, so use lit candles carefully to avoid injuries. Consider battery-operated candles instead.
- Do not let your kids eat anything until you have inspected their candy for broken wrappers and choking hazards. Tell your children that their candy must pass mandatory “adult inspection” before they can enjoy it. Treats not commercially wrapped or those with loose or open wrappers should be thrown out.
Halloween is a wonderful time of year for fantasy, make-believe, and sugary treats. Randall Children Hospital is offering Halloween safety bags for $20 that include candy, toys, safety products, and other goodies. Contact the Safety Center at Randall Children’s Hospital to pre-order your Halloween safety bag before October 21, 2022. Scan the QR code below or call (503) 413-4443 for more information. Candy-free holiday bags are available.
Amber Kroeker has been a seasoned injury prevention health educator and certified child passenger safety technician for the past 12 years. She cherishes the role of helping protect children and their families from injury and harm at the Safety Center at Randall Children’s Hospital. Amber is responsible for programs focused on safe sleep, child passenger safety, child abuse prevention, infant CPR and many other areas of injury prevention for children.