Make sure Halloween trick-or-treating travel with children stays fright free! It’s important for children and adults to remember safety tips when taking to the streets for holiday fun. Whether your children are accompanied by you, on their own, or if you’re in the driver’s seat, these “tricks” could stop injuries. Possibly even save lives. Discovery TravelingMom has more.
Halloween Spooky Travel
Halloween conjures up fond memories of walking down neighborhood streets, trick-or-treating with friends. As kids, we didn’t think much about the lack of sidewalks. Actually, we didn’t think about sidewalks much at all. We just shared the road with other trick-or-treaters and any cars driving by.
As an adult with kids in Brooklyn, New York, this thought sends shivers down my spine. The sugary-sweet Halloween holiday could turn nightmarish if kids aren’t paying attention and a car gets too close. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported Halloween is one of the top days of the year for pedestrian injuries and fatalities.
But there are things you can do as a parent, a trick-or-treater and a driver to keep things spooky safe!
Halloween Safety Tips for the Pedestrian
If your children will be Halloween trick-or-treating by themselves this year here are some key safety tips to go over with them. Experts recommend children under 12 be accompanied by a parent or adult. And if you’re out on the parental pedestrian trail, set a good example for your little ones!
- Cross at corners. Cross at crosswalks. Cross at traffic lights. No jaywalking. Don’t cross in the middle of the block.
- Remember what you learned as a little kid—look left, look right, and look left AGAIN before crossing!
- Don’t run from spot to spot! Just walk.
- Walk in a group. And what’s more—when crossing the street put your hands in the air! You’ll make yourselves even more visible!
- No “texting and walking.” Keep your electronics in your pockets and watch where you’re going.
- Watch out for driveways. Stop before reaching them to make sure there’s no car speeding out or backing up who may not see you.
- If there’s a sidewalk-use it! No need to walk in the street if a sidewalk is an option. If there are no sidewalks, AAA recommends walking far on the left side of the road, facing traffic.
- Avoid walking between parked cars.
- Walk in areas that you know. Tonight is not the night to get out and explore strange areas. Do that in the daytime in advance of Halloween.
- Look for well-lit areas. If you’re walking through an area that’s not well lit, bring a flashlight. (Make sure not to shine it at oncoming drivers!) Consider incorporating reflective tape into your costume. Or stock up on glow-sticks and use them instead.
Halloween Safety Tips for Drivers
OK, so your kids are too old for candy cruising any longer. What a load off your mind. But just because this is the case doesn’t mean you are off the hook. If you’ll be behind the wheel of a car traveling there are also important safety tips to consider.
- Trick-or-treating hours may begin as early as 4pm for little ones and primetime for kids is considered between 5:30p and 9:30p—so SLOW DOWN! Give yourself extra reaction time in case children dart into the street unexpectedly. Let’s face it. Kids are excited to be out and about. They may be dashing across the street simply because they spot a house giving out full-sized candy bars!
- Watch for children at cross walks, intersections, corners and curbs. There’s a good chance they may not be paying attention to traffic.
- Be extra careful exiting driveways, parking garages, alleys or small streets.
- Turn on your headlights in the daylight hours. Let the trick-or-treaters see you coming!
- And this one is really important: If you’re not going to stay sober on Halloween, make sure you have a designated driver! The NHTSA reports in 2015, more than half of all highway fatalities across the nation on Halloween night involved a driver with a BAC of .08 or higher!
While these tips can certainly make your Halloween holiday safer, there’s no reason not to use the majority of them any day of the year! Happy Halloween!