The streets may be lined with spooky skeletons, ghosts, and Jack-o'-lanterns, but with these trick-or-treat safety tips, the only thing that you need to be afraid of this Halloween is finishing up those last minute costume details in time. (You can do it! We believe in you.) Read on to learn more about candy checks, staying safe while out trick-or-treating, and keeping your Halloween allergen free!
1) Keeping Safe on the Street
According to Safe Kids Worldwide, children twelve years and younger should be supervised by an adult when trick-or-treating - even if they think they might be old enough to go alone. Keep an eye out to make sure that your child is alert and aware of his or her surroundings. Read on for the full list of Safe Kids Worldwide street safety tips, or click here to be linked to the full article.
Cross the street at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
Look left, right and left again when crossing and keep looking as you cross.
Put electronic devices down and keep heads up and walk, don’t run, across the street.
Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible. Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.
Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.
Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.
Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
Slow down and be especially alert in residential neighborhoods. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways.
Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs.
Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.
Eliminate any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
Drive slowly, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distances.
Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. so be especially alert for kids during those hours.
Keeping Safe at Home...
We get that the first thing your kiddo wants to do after getting home from a night of trick-or-treating is to dive head first into his or her bag of goodies... after all, who wouldn't? However, parents and guardians should take a moment to do a candy check with their children in a well lit area to make sure everything is safe. Teach your children what to look out for during the check, so they can be aware of what is and might not be safe! Although its not often that people will tamper with Halloween treats, it does happen, and for this reason, its always better to be cautious. Channel Islands suggests that children should wait until after this check has been done by a responsible adult to eat any treats given to them, so even though they may not like it, your children should refrain from opening any candy until you've looked it over at home.
Throw away any candies that have an unusual appearance or discoloration, tiny pinholes or tears in the wrappers, or any items that appear spoiled or are unwrapped.
Homemade items or baked goods should be discarded unless you personally know the giver.
When in doubt, throw it out!
If you have any questions regarding how to spot tainted or tampered with candy, call Poison Control (open 24/7) at 1-800-222-1222.
Wrap Up Tips on Candy Consumption...
Younger children should be monitored when consuming or sharing candy, as gum, peanuts, hard candies, and small toys can be choking hazards or allergens.
Children and teens should not accept, and should absolutely not eat, anything that isn't commercially wrapped.
Junk food and sweets are okay in moderation, but to keep your kids healthy and feeling well, ration their Halloween stash in the days following the holiday.
To read more Halloween safety tips, click the recommended links at the bottom of this post!
Blog post sources and relevant articles:
Safe Kids Worldwide, "Halloween Safety Tips": https://www.safekids.org/tip/halloween-safety-tips
Channel Islands, "Safety Tips For Checking Halloween Candy": https://www.csuci.edu/publicsafety/police/Halloween_candy.htm
Allergy and Asthma Specialists of North Florida, Top Tips for Halloween Allergy Safety https://www.jaxallergy.com/top-tips-allergy-safety-halloween/