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Tips to Keep Children Safe on Halloween

Safe Kids Worldwide has some easy and effective tips for drivers and parents to make sure all ghosts and goblins can trick-or-treat safely. Credit: Manley099/iStockphoto
Safe Kids Worldwide has some easy and effective tips for drivers and parents to make sure all ghosts and goblins can trick-or-treat safely. Credit: Manley099/iStockphoto
October 26, 2015

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Halloween can be one of the best nights of the year for children across America. But for parents, it can be nerve-wracking. On average, twice as many children are killed on Halloween than any other day of the year - according to the child safety organization Safe Kids Worldwide.

Kate Carr, the group's president and CEO, says by taking a few simple precautions, children, parents and especially drivers can make the night fun and safe.

"Slow down, turn your lights on early," says Carr. "Don't be a distracted driver, because you know kids are just going to be excited and running around. Just be especially alert, especially if you're backing out of a driveway, that a small child might be darting out behind you."

Carr says drivers should be extra cautious in residential neighborhoods between 5:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m., the most popular trick-or-treating hours. And she says get rid of anything that prevents you from concentrating on the road, that means no phone calls and definitely no texting.

Carr notes 12 percent of children five years old or younger trick-or-treat without adult supervision. She says on a night where candy is flowing freely, children get so excited it's easy to forget about crossing the street safely.

Carr says it's important for parents to talk with their children before Halloween night.

"Have a conversation, remind them to look left-right-left, to be on the alert for drivers," she says. "And younger kids under the age of 10 don't necessarily understand speed and the distance of a car that's traveling. So parents, join your kids for trick or treating night."

Carr says flashlights and glow sticks can help make children more visible to drivers, and decorating costumes and bags with reflective tape is also a good idea. And she says whenever possible choose face paint instead of masks, which can obstruct a child's vision.

For more tips on how your little monsters can have a blast this Halloween and stay safe, visit safekids.org.

Eric Galatas, Public News Service - NM