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Parenting

19th Oct 2023

Seven tips for staying safe when trick-or-treating this Halloween

Jody Coffey

trick

With Halloween weekend just around the corner, the conversation is likely focused on trick-or-treats and costumes.

However, experts at Get Licensed have given a gentle reminder that there are dangers to keep in mind with an increase in drunk driving cases and busier streets, and they report, unfortunately, that pedestrian deaths spike by 43% on Halloween night due to these factors.

Putting extra safety measures in place won’t spoil the Halloween fun, and it pays to know what ways you can protect your kids on the spookiest night of the year.

Below are Get Licensed’s top tips for staying safe while trick-or-treating this Halloween.

Credit: Getty

Children under 12 should be with an adult

It likely goes without saying that any children dressing up and heading out on Halloween night should be under adult supervision. This might mean organising a group of other parents to collectively take your kids out together, or even going as a family.

If your child is over the age of 12 and you don’t feel they are mature enough to head out alone, listen to that gut instinct and insist on joining them.

Credit: Getty

Visible & identifiable costumes

To avoid a tragic accident, as pedestrian deaths are at their highest on Halloween night – compared to any other Autumnal night – a costume with reflective material (glow stick bracelets, hi-vis features – either on costumes to trick-or-treat bag), will protect children by ensuring they are spotted by oncoming drivers.

Many Halloween costumes tend to be dark in appearance and therefore can prevent a motorist from seeing the person wearing them at night.

Safe Costumes

While it can be great fun to create or go in search of a unique costume, the experts at Get Licensed highly advise against consumes that might obstruct their view or become a fire or trip hazard.

Over elaborate costumes that alter how your child walks or moves may look cool, but the design may hold them up if there is a potential risk or put them in the line of danger with cars driving up and down the street.

Credit: Getty

Stranger danger

This is one that all parents have concerns about – all year long. Trick-or-treating is a family-friendly activity, but it comes with the added risk of strangers with malintent taking advantage of the occasion.

Having a conversation with your child about the dangers of strangers, such as entering their home, or car, or going with them away from the trick-or-treaters is extremely important before heading out.

Only visiting homes clearly accepting trick-or-treaters

This is one to keep in mind as a family heading out to trick-or-treat and to discuss with your older children. To avoid disturbing those who are not participating in the occasion, always look out for decorations or signs of a welcoming nature for trick-or-treaters.

Try not to eat the sweets until you’re at home

This one may prove difficult, but it really is for the best. Aside from the budding excitement of waiting and upending the bag full of sweets after, it removes the risk of your child consuming something that may have been tampered with, as well as the dangers of choking on small sweets.

At home, it will not only be more fun, but also safer.

Halloween
Credit: Getty

Check for unwanted items

Following on from the above advice, this is of the utmost importance.

While it’s hard to believe that anyone would intentionally try to harm an innocent child collecting sweets, unfortunately, they do exist.

Dangerous objects such as razor blades and needles, as well as drugs and pills disguised as sweets, can sadly end up in trick-or-treat bags, so proceeding with caution when checking the bags is vital. Only allow your child to eat wrapped and sealed sweets.

Most importantly, have fun and make lots of fun memories while you’re kid is still young enough to enjoy the excitement of trick-or-treating!

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