How to stay safe while trick-or-treating

Halloween can be an exciting time of year for children, but the highlight of Halloween, trick or treating, can come with a lot of safety hazards and dangers. Make sure you read these seven tips from The National Safety Council to help you keep yourself and your loved ones safe while trick-or-treating this Halloween.

1. Supervise young children

A young child should never go trick-or-treating alone. A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children as they do their rounds throughout the neighbourhood for treats.

2. Set guidelines for the evening

If your children are older and are going out without you, it’s a good idea to set some guidelines before they leave for the evening. Plan and go over with your child a route that is safe and they will stick to. Staying in well-lit and familiar areas make for a safer evening. Remind your child to avoid trick-or-treating alone and stay with a buddy or a group. Before they leave decide on a time when they should expected to be home.

3. Pick and choose where to knock

While you’re out with your children, only approach homes that have a porch light on. Make sure to explain this to your children if they are going out without you as well. Not only will the bad lighting pose a safety issue but it also indicates that a knock on the door will not be welcomed. A lack of outdoor lights or decorations means there’s a good chance they aren’t participating in the Halloween fun.

4. Educate about stranger danger

Trick-or-treating on Halloween means your child might be interacting with a lot of strangers. While you probably have told your child on other occasions to never get into a stranger’s car or to never go into a stranger’s home it’s a good time to remind them before the trick-or-treating begins. The fun and excitement of Halloween can be distracting so let them know if they’re offered to go with a stranger, get into a stranger’s car or enter a stranger’s home to get a treat to say no.

5. Be aware

There can be lots of distractions on Halloween so it’s important to stay focused on where you’re going. Being glued to a phone and not paying attention to where you are going can be a problem for both parents and children. Keeping your eyes up, using a flashlight, looking both ways before crossing the street and walking instead of running can go a long way in keeping you and your children safe.

6. Wait to eat the treats

Whether your child is going out on their own or with you, setting a rule to wait to munch on their treats till arriving home is a good idea. Going through your child’s candy loot is essential for safety. Look at each item for tampering with the packaging and any allergens that might affect your child. Homemade treats, unless made by a close family member or friend you can trust, should be thrown out.

7. Pick your costume carefully

Your costume plays a big role in your Halloween safety. All parts of your child’s costume should be fire-resistant and if you or your children will be going out after dark, attaching reflective tape to their costumes and treat bags is a good way for them to stay visible. Also, if you or your child are using makeup as part of a costume ensure it’s nontoxic, test it in a small area before applying lots and remove all of it before going to sleep.

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