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Halloween Can Be Both Hazardous and Helpful

PHOTO:
PHOTO:
October 31, 2013

BOISE, Idaho - Amid all the fun tonight is a somber message: It's the deadliest day of the year for child pedestrian accidents, according to State Farm. Roger Sherman, executive director of the Idaho Children's Trust Fund, advised parent to make sure children carry flashlights, add reflectors to costumes, set clear rules about crossing the street only with an adult - in fact, go ahead and go a little overboard to protect all children.

"We need to make sure that our kids are visible - hopefully, we're out with them - have them wear glow sticks, do whatever it takes. And if we're driving, let's be super careful about it," Sherman warned.

After the safety guidelines are in place, Sherman added, there's a chance to get to know your neighbors, and those social connections are important to child development. The door-to-door tradition of Halloween is a natural ice-breaker. Sherman calls it an "opportunity."

"It's a time when people are out; they're talking to each other. We can really use that time to build connections that keep our kids safe - not just on Halloween, but every day," Sherman said.

One more thought from Sherman: Greet your neighborhood children the next day - and every day - to help build community.

State Farm statistics and safety tips are available at http://learningcenter.statefarm.com.

Deborah Courson Smith/Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - ID