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Trick or Treat: Halloween Safety

The McClellan Law Firm

While the sunny weather may not indicate that it is October in San Diego, Halloween is just a few weekends away. Even though trick or treating is candy-filled fun, Halloween night is notoriously dangerous. No, it’s not the fright-filled scare tactics you need to be afraid of, but the risk of accident and injury caused by negligence on this night. Sure, Halloween can be an exciting and fun celebration, but it also creates an increased risk for accidents. Whether you plan on going out or staying at home this Halloween, make sure you follow some of these key safety tips to avoid getting a real scare!

1. Can You See in the Dark? Wear Bright Clothing & Stay Visible.

From trick or treating to walking home at night, it is crucial that you wear bright clothing that makes you visible as a pedestrian. According to reports from State Farm Insurance and the National Center for Statistics Halloween, Halloween is one of the deadliest times for child pedestrian fatalities. From 1990 to 2010, the report showed that 115 child deaths occurred on Halloween due to such accidents, which is 5 to 6 fatal accidents every year. That number doesn’t even include pedestrian accidents that led to injuries!

What can you do to be extra safe?

  • Carry a flashlight (or give your kids one)
  • Apply reflective tape to costumes
  • Go over street safety with your kids / teenagers
  • Eliminate visibility issues in costumes
  • Keep an eye out for vehicles

2. Blow Out the Candles: Avoid Open Flames.

Sure, having an authentic jack-o’-lantern may sound like a great idea, but it is best to avoid open flames at all costs. Halloween decorations and costumes are often highly flammable, making it all the more dangerous to have candles around. While that may mean no open flames, that doesn’t mean you have to give up the festive lighting! There are plenty of alternatives that can be used to help avoid burn injuries. Just make sure light strings don’t cause tripping hazards, electric lights have the UL mark (tested for safety), and you don’t overload the circuits! This could lead to a dangerous house fire.

When you plan to have trick or treaters around, keep your home well-lit to prevent walkway accidents.

3. The Season of Falls: Keep an Eye Out for Walkway Hazards.

With the hustle and bustle of Halloween, most children and parents alike don’t often look down at the ground to make sure they aren’t walking into a dangerous hazard. As a homeowner, you can eliminate tripping hazards, cover up holes in your lawn, and remove any items that may lead to a slip and fall accident on your walkway. Likewise, if you are walking from home to home, make sure you are aware of your surroundings, even in the dark. Having a flashlight on hand can help you quickly light up difficult to see walkways to ensure you or your kiddos don’t take a tumble.

More General Halloween Safety

Keep in mind, Halloween isn’t just for trick or treaters either. Many people love to celebrate in a very festive manner, increasing the number of drunk drivers on the road. Even if you are just going out to dinner or grabbing something from the store, you should be extra cautious when driving on Halloween! Be more defensive in your driving habits to ensure you avoid a drunk driving accident.

Overall, there are plenty of other measures you can take to make your Halloween night fun and injury-free. From keeping your costume free from tripping hazards to avoiding too many decorative candles, taking extra precautions can help ensure you don’t take a trip to the hospital, ER, or worse.