Halloween is a time of fun and games for most children, but it can also be a time of concern for many. Whether you’re a homeowner looking to avoid an insurance claim or a parent trying to keep a little one safe, we’ve got you covered with these helpful tips.
Deter mischief makers
Mischief Night, Goosey Night, or Devil’s Night… No matter what you call it, pranks on the evening before Halloween can run from a mild nuisance to expensive vandalism. Keep your outside lights on all night to deter shenanigans on your property. Be aware that overgrown shrubs and foliage can provide a hiding place for would-be vandals, so proper maintenance is important.
Understand that this is a night when more tweens and teens are out roaming as opposed to accompanied children. What’s more, older children may be dressed in darker clothes or be running from friends to avoid getting pranked themselves. Drive slowly and carefully through residential neighborhoods.
Prepare your property for visitors
The fastest way to find yourself responsible for the injuries of others is to create an environment where one is likely to get hurt. Take a few precautions before the ghosts and goblins arrive to minimize the likelihood of an accident.
- Clear the area in front of your house, such as the sidewalk, front walk, porch, stoop or stairs, of debris or any other item a trick-or-treater could trip over.
- Be sure your property is well-lit.
- Even well-trained animals can get anxious with so many kids coming to the door. Keep pets indoors and away from visitors.
- Avoid using real candles inside jack-o-lanterns, especially if they are in a high-traffic area such as near your front door.
Teach children about safety
Studies have shown that Halloween is one of the most dangerous nights for pedestrians, particularly children. Reduced visibility, darkness, and failure to cross at intersections are all contributing factors to the higher rate of fatal accidents on Halloween night. Whenever possible, accompany children as they trick-or-treat as a means to ensure they are paying attention to their surroundings and using caution when entering the roadway.
Be sure your child’s costume does not obstruct their view or pose a tripping hazard. Encourage them to remove any masks and to hold up longer costumes to avoid falls while crossing the street. Also, remind them to never dart out between cars and into the roadway.
Use caution while driving
Remember that kids will be kids. While out driving, use extra vigilance to avoid hitting trick-or-treaters. Keep your headlights on at all times to help you see pedestrians and help them to see you. Drive slowly in residential areas and watch for children running across the street away from intersections. While you should never text and drive, it’s even more critical to avoid distracted driving when so many people are out walking around.
No one wants to see a holiday turn into a tragedy. Using care and common sense, Halloween can be a fun and happy time for everyone!