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Halloween safety tips for families

October 14, 2015
Before Halloween arrives, make your home safer for trick-or-treaters.

Halloween is an exciting and fun-filled time for children and families, but for parents and homeowners it also poses safety challenges. Excited kids will be focused on costumes and candy, leaving adults to worry about accidents and injuries. Before Halloween night, be sure to know these home safety tips so you can spend the holiday focused on having fun.

Opting for LED lights instead of candles in jack-o'-lanterns is one way to increase Halloween safety. Opting for LED lights instead of candles in jack-o'-lanterns is one way to increase Halloween safety.

Costume safety

While Halloween costumes can be fun, they don't always have the best visibility. Masks can cover eyes and obscure peripheral vision, or costumes can be too long and cause children to trip. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, costumes make children more likely to injure their arms, hands and legs from falling.

Before heading out for trick-or-treating, have your children test out their costumes by walking around the house. As an additional precaution, add reflective tape to the costumes so your children will be more visible to drivers.

Watch for cars

Precautions around automobiles are especially important on Halloween due to the darkness of autumn nights and the number of excited children who will be walking along roads. Safe Kids Worldwide reported children are twice as likely to be hit by a car on Halloween than on any other night of the year.

Teach your children to stay on pathways and sidewalks, follow traffic signals, look before crossing roads and make eye contact with drivers whenever possible. For additional safety in your own driveway, install motion-sensing lights to help alert you if children are in your car's blind spot.

Make pathways safer

"Keep walkways clear of wet leaves, snow, toys or lawn decorations children could trip over.”

You can further reduce the risk of injury on your property by lighting your outdoor areas. Placing LED puck lights along stairways and pathways will illuminate a safe path to your front doors. Halloween-themed lights or outdoor lanterns can double as decorations while also increasing visibility. The American Academy of Pediatrics also recommended keeping all walkways clear of wet leaves, snow, toys or lawn decorations children could trip over. If you have any loose porch floorboards or handrails, get those fixed before the trick-or-treaters arrive.

Fire safety

Jack-o'-lanterns or luminaries are Halloween traditions. While the candles inside these decorations adds a spooky ambiance to your home, those open flames are also increasing the risk of fire. SafeWise recommend keeping the glow but opting for a safer approach by using battery-powered flickering lights instead of candles.