FORT CARSON, Colo. – As ghosts, goblins, zombies and monsters prepare to roam the streets for precious sweets, it is important for parents to take elements of the night into consideration before their children embark on that journey.
According to AAA, Halloween is the deadliest night of the year for pedestrians. Many of those victims are children caught up in the excitement of the night.
The following tips from the 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson Safety Office can help reduce those numbers for Joint Task Force Carson Families and the surrounding communities:
— Carry a flashlight
— Walk, don’t run
— Stay on sidewalks — if no sidewalk is present, walk on the left side of the road, facing traffic
— Obey all traffic signals
— Stay in familiar neighborhoods
— Don’t cut across yards or driveways
— Wear a watch that can be read in the dark
— Make sure costumes don’t drag on the ground
— Wear shoes that fit, even if they don’t go with the costume
— Avoid wearing masks while walking
— Carry only flexible knives, swords or other props
— Wear clothing with reflective markings or tape
— Approach only houses that are lit; if the porch lights are off, move on to the next home
— Stay away from, and don’t pet, animals you don’t know
— Have children eat dinner before setting out, so they don’t snack on uninspected candy.
— Young children should be accompanied by an adult.
— If children go out on their own, be sure they wear a watch, preferably one that can be read in the dark, and that they have some sort of identification. Consider loaning them your cell phone just in case.
— If buying a costume, look for one made of flame-retardant and reflective material.
— Older children should know where to reach parents and when to be home.
— Know the route children are taking.
— Although tampering is rare, tell children to bring the candy home to be inspected before consuming anything.
— Look at the wrapping carefully, and toss out anything that looks suspicious.
— Turn porch lights off if you don’t want to have trick-or-treaters visit the home.
— Make sure the yard is clear of such things as ladders, hoses, dog leashes and flower pots, all of which can trip children or be used in mischief.
— Some pets get frightened on Halloween; keep them inside to avoid accidents.
— Battery-powered or electric jack-o’-lantern “candles” are preferable to a real flame.
— Make sure electric-powered decorations and jack-o’-lanterns have their cords taped down or away from sidewalks and porches.
— If candles are used, place the pumpkin well away from where trick-or-treaters will be walking or standing.
— Make sure paper or cloth yard decorations won’t be blown into a flaming candle.
— Consider healthy food alternatives such as low-fat crackers, single-serve boxes of cereal, packaged fruit rolls, mini boxes of raisins and single-serve packets of low-fat microwave popcorn.
— Don’t pass out non-prepackaged foods.
— Remember to make safety a priority during Halloween, so that everyone can have a good time.