Community

Spooky Truths Regarding Halloween Safety On and Off the Road

Kids love the magic of Halloween: Trick-or-treating, classroom parties and trips to a neighborhood haunted house. But for moms and dads, often there is a fine line between Halloween fun and safety concerns, especially when it comes to road and pedestrian safety.

In 2015, about 6,700 pedestrian deaths and 160,000 medically consulted injuries occurred among pedestrians in motor vehicle incidents, according to Injury Facts 2017, the statistical report on unintentional injuries created by the National Safety Council.

NSC research reveals about 17% of these deaths occurred when pedestrians improperly crossed roads or intersections. Lack of visibility because of low lighting or dark clothing accounted for about 15% of the deaths. Other circumstances varied by age: Darting or running into the road accounted for about 15% of deaths in kids ages 5 to 9 and 7% for those 10 to 15.

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, and October ranks No. 2 in motor vehicle deaths by month, with 3,550. August is first, with 3,642 deaths.

Follow These Ghoulishly Good Practices

To help ensure adults and children have a safe holiday, the American Academy of Pediatrics has compiled a list of Halloween Safety Tips, including do’s and don’ts:
A responsible adult should accompany young children on the neighborhood rounds
If your older children are going alone, plan and review a route acceptable to you
Agree on a specific time children should return home
Teach your children to never enter a stranger’s home or car
Instruct children to travel only in familiar, well-lit areas and stick with their friends
Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home
All costumes, wigs and accessories should be fire-resistant
Avoid masks, which can obstruct vision
If children are allowed out after dark, fasten reflective tape to their costumes and bags, or give them glow sticks
When buying Halloween makeup, make sure it is nontoxic and always test it in a small area first
Remove all makeup before children go to bed to prevent skin and eye irritation

Children and adults are reminded to put electronic devices down, keep heads up and walk, don’t run, across the street. NSC offers these additional safety tips for parents – and anyone who plans to be on the road during trick-or-treat hours. This information is brought to you by the National Safety Council.

About the author

The West Bank Beacon

The West Bank Beacon is a local monthly publication with a mailed circulation of over 15,000 and thousands more distributed at points from Gretna to Grand Isle, the Beacon tells the story of a thriving community. A “good news” newspaper, our mission is to make readers aware of how both individuals and groups are making a positive difference in the neighborhoods where they live. This includes a focus on civic and city initiatives, volunteer efforts, and charity fundraisers, to name just a few examples.

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