What are Safety Recommendations for Halloween Beyond Avoiding The Ghosts and Goblins?

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Halloween is a great time for children to dress up and have fun. Since the holiday is typically celebrated at night and involves children roaming the neighborhood, parents should plan out the night and make sure that the children are properly supervised and safe during their Halloween activities including the traditional “Trick or Treat” visits to neighborhood homes.

Costume Selection. Ideally, costumes should be a bright color so that the child can be easily seen by drivers in the area. Many costumes are mostly black like those for vampires, witches, and other characters. Parents should add color, reflective strips, and glow sticks to the attire as needed to make sure that the child is visible during his or her trick or treat activities. Costumes should also be proper fitting so that the child does not trip while walking or running. In addition, mask and other items covering the face should be positioned and sized so that the child has sufficient vision or view to get around on Halloween.

Shoes. While heels and stilts may help complete a costume, parents should take efforts to make sure that the child wears comfortable shoes like sneakers. Many injuries take place on Halloween when a child trips and falls. Proper footwear can help prevent many of these incidents from taking place.

Substitute Make Up and Face Paint for Masks. A good alternative to masks which can block vision is the use of make up and face paint. When possible and available, avoid the use of masks so that the child has good vision during the Halloween festivities.

Trick or Treat at Home You Know. Ideally, children should be restricted to homes and neighborhoods in which you know the neighbors and homeowners. Of course, parents should still supervise the children in the neighborhood. By staying close to home, your children will avoid some of the risks associated with Halloween.

Review Candy Loot and Collections. Parents should go through the candy loot and collections of the child for a number of reasons. Any unwrapped candy products should be discarded. Any candy products that you are not familiar with should also be discarded. Candy that seems old in nature should also be discarded. Parents of young child should discard hard candy and other items that may present a choking hazard to children. Finally, parents should limit the intake or consumption of candy on the night of Halloween and thereafter.

Make Your Home and Yard Safe. Prior to Halloween, make sure your home is safe for visitors and children. Clear the yard of debris and other items that may present a tripping hazards for the children and their parents. Make sure that lights are functioning and on for the evening of Halloween. Avoid having lit items that are not supervised that may be accessible to children and others. When possible, be at home to watch over the yard and house, the children, and the trick or treat activities.

If a child is injured on Halloween, there may be a case to pursue assuming that the four basic elements of a negligence case can be established which are:

1. Duty;
2. Breach of Duty;
3. Causation; and
4. Negligence.

The book titled – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Homeowner’s Insurance, Automobile Accidents, School Injuries, Day Care Center Injuries, and other topics. You can receive this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.