Keeping the Treat in Your Child's Halloween
J-W Staff Reports
Halloween is a time that launches many children into fits of glee. But with the excitement of wondering what goblins the night will bring comes danger, and a few simple safety steps are a necessity when trick-or-treating.
"Many parents don't know that Halloween can be one of the most dangerous nights of the year for children," said Jan Stegelman of the Kansas SAFE KIDS Coalition. "Children must be outfitted in safe costumes and parents should review safety tips before they go out trick-or-treating."
Pedestrian injuries, burns and falls account for the majority of injuries on Halloween. To help make sure your child's Halloween is safe, the Kansas SAFE KIDS Coalition recommends these precautions:
- Accompany young children on their trick-or-treating rounds.
- Attach the name, address and phone number (including area code) to the clothes of children under age 12.
- Teach your child his or her phone number. Make sure your child has change for a phone call.
- Instruct children never to enter a home or an apartment building unless accompanied by an adult chaperone.
- Set a time for children to return home.
- Restrict trick-or-treating visits to homes with outside lights illuminated.
- Remove breakable items or obstacles such as tools, ladders and children's toys from outside your home. Keep jack-o'-lanterns lit with candles away from areas where costumes might brush against them.
- Tell children to bring their treats home before eating them. Parents should check treats to ensure that items have not been tampered with and are safely sealed.
- Make costumes short enough to avoid tripping.
- Dress children in shoes that fit. Adult shoes are not safe for trick-or-treaters. The larger size makes it easier for them to trip and fall.
- Allow children to carry only flexible props. Anything children carry could injure them if they fall.