LAST MINUTE PREP:
- Plan costumes that are bright and reflective. Make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, entanglement or contact with flame.
- Consider adding reflective tape or striping to costumes and Trick-or-Treat bags for greater visibility.
- Secure emergency identification (name, address, phone number) discreetly within Halloween attire or on a bracelet.
- Because masks can limit or block eyesight, consider non-toxic makeup and decorative hats as safer alternatives.
- When shopping for costumes, wigs and accessories, look for and purchase only those with a label clearly indicating they are flame resistant.
- Think twice before using simulated knives, guns or swords. If such props must be used, be certain they do not appear authentic and are soft and flexible to prevent injury.
- Obtain flashlights with fresh batteries for all children and their escorts.
- Plan ahead to use only battery-powered lanterns or chemical lightsticks in place of candles in decorations and costumes.
- This is also a great time to buy fresh batteries for your home smoke alarm.
- Teach children to how call 9-1-1 (or their local emergency number) if they have an emergency or become lost. Remind them that 9-1-1 can be dialed free at any payphone.
- Review with your children the principle of "Stop-Drop-Roll", should their clothes catch on fire.
- Openly discuss appropriate and inappropriate behavior at Halloween time.
- Consider purchasing individually packaged healthy food alternatives (or safe non-food treats) for those who visit your home.
- Take extra effort to eliminate tripping hazards on your porch and walkway. Check around your property for low tree limbs, support wires or garden hoses that may prove hazardous to young children rushing from house to house.
- Learn or review CPR skills to aid someone who is choking or having a heart attack.
- A good meal prior to parties and trick-or-treating will discourage youngsters from filling up on Halloween treats.
- Consider fire safety when decorating. Do not overload electrical outlets with holiday lighting or special effects.
- Always keep Jack O' Lanterns and hot electric lamps away from drapes, decorations, flammable materials or areas where children will be standing or walking.
- Plan and review with your children the route and behavior acceptable to you. Agree on a specific time when revelers must return home.
- Along with flashlights for all, older children and escorts should wear a wristwatch and carry coins for non-emergency phone calls.
- Confine, segregate or otherwise prepare household pets for an evening of frightful sights and sounds. Be sure that all dogs and cats are wearing collars and proper identification tags. Consult your veterinarian for further advice.
- Remind all household drivers to remain cautious and drive slowly throughout the community.
- Adult partygoers should establish a designated driver.
A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
Remind Trick-or Treaters:
- By using a flashlight, they can see and be seen by others.
- Stay in a group and communicate where they will be going.
- Only go to homes with a porch light on.
- Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
- If no sidewalk is available, walk at the farthest edge of the roadway facing traffic.
- Never cut across yards or use alleys.
- Never enter a stranger's home or car for a treat.
- Obey all traffic and pedestrian regulations.
- Always walk. Never run across a street.
- Only cross the street as a group in established crosswalks.
- Remove any mask or item that will limit eyesight before crossing a street, driveway or alley.
- Don't assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing Trick-or-Treaters. Just because one car stops doesn't mean others will!
- Never consume food items or drinks that may be offered.
- No treats are to be eaten until they are thoroughly checked by an adult at home.
- Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.
- Wait until children are home to sort and check treats. Though tampering is rare, a responsible Adult should closely examine all treats and throw away any spoiled, unwrapped or suspicious items. Also look for candy that may cause choking.
- Try to apportion treats for the days following Halloween.
For extra Halloween Fun, download this coloring page/tip sheet!