On Thursday night, thousands of children will travel door-to-door in our area in search of candy.
Most people think the biggest concern of that night may be the little ones partaking in too much of the sweet stuff.
But in reality, road safety should be at the top of trick-or-treaters’ and their parents’ minds.
Children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a vehicle and killed on Halloween as any other day, according to the National Safety Council.
But if trick-or-treaters and those driving take appropriate precautions, too many sweets can be the only worry Halloween night.
If a child’s costume isn’t bright and reflective, add reflective tape to the costume and trick-or-treat bags to increase visibility. A child can also wear a light or glow stick.
Because masks can limit eyesight, wearing makeup is a better alternative. If a mask is used, make sure the child can see clearly in all directions.
Make sure all parts of a costume fit properly. Hats should not slide over a child’s eyes, shoes must fit properly, and make sure clothing is not long enough to be a trip hazard.
Young children should trick-or-treat with an adult. Older children should travel in groups and carry working cellphones.
If a trick-or-treating route includes streets that are not well-lit, make sure all participants carry working flashlights with new batteries.
If there are no sidewalks, stay as far off the road as possible, walking facing traffic.
Trick-or-treaters should only go to houses that have a porch light on, and they should never enter a stranger’s home or car.
They should also make sure they only cross the street at established or traditional crosswalks after carefully checking for traffic.
Electronics should be put away while walking. Trick-or-treaters must keep their eyes on the road.
The same must be said for those who are driving on Halloween.
Drivers should travel through neighborhoods slower than normal while trick-or-treating is ongoing.
Those who are driving children from house to house must be especially careful while entering and exiting driveways. Pull out slowly and make sure lights are on. Beeping the horn is not a bad idea, either.
New drivers should avoid getting behind the wheel, as well.
Those who offer treats at their home should make sure their porch or area where children will be visiting is well-lit.
And, while candy is the main goal of most children on Halloween night, not all kids can eat — or want — candy. Having a variety of candy, small toys, and fruit or vegetable snacks can help all children feel included.
Speaking of treats, tell children to wait until they get home to dip into their trick-or-treat bags. Parents should carefully check over all candy.
Discard any open packaging and look over ingredients. Make sure all ingredients are appropriate for your child. Allergies must be taken seriously. There also have been reports in other area of THC-laced edibles that look like Halloween candy being sold, and some candy bars may contain alcohol.
Taking a few precautions on Halloween night will ensure the holiday won’t be scary — or at least no scarier than the participants want it to be.