As kids go door to door on foot collecting candy, Halloween is one of the most dangerous nights for pedestrians. According to the National Safety Council, children are more likely to experience auto accident injuries on October 31 than any other day of the year.
Drivers and parents of little ghosts and goblins can work together to prevent these incidents with these five safety tips.
Kids in dark costumes are invisible to drivers once the sun goes down, so have your children carry flashlights or wear reflective tape. Glow sticks are also a good idea. As for drivers, travel slowly and keep your headlights on so children can see you.
Emphasize street safety
Make sure your children know that they still need to follow safe crossing practices on Halloween. Remind them to look both ways, avoid darting out from between parked cars and cross only at crosswalks and other designated areas. Tell them to pay attention when walking, since texting or smartphone use can be a dangerous distraction.
Walk along with your children as they trick-or-treat in your neighborhood. Kids who are old enough to go it alone should stick together and stay on the sidewalks on a parent-approved route.
Drivers should crawl along in residential neighborhoods, especially around 6 p.m. as both foot and vehicle traffic increases. Drop your speed on busy blocks and be aware of potential costumed little ones emerging in the street unexpectedly.
Consider closing streets
Community members can discuss designating certain blocks for trick-or-treating and closing those areas to road traffic during afternoon and evening hours on Halloween. Many towns rely on a “trunk or treat” event where parents and volunteers give out candy from parked cars in a closed setting for safety.
As a community, we can prioritize pedestrian safety. These best practices help stop auto accidents from taking the fun out of Halloween night.