Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween can be a fun time for everyone. But it is important to take precaution at all times. We offer families these tips for staying safe while trick-or-treating or enjoying other Halloween festivities:

  1. Parents: Have flashlights while trick-or-treating to help prevent you and your child from tripping and falling. Also, make sure your house has adequate lighting so no one trips and falls on the way out the door.

  2. Make sure children’s costumes are nonflammable and easily visible. Where there are candles around, the risk for clothing potentially catching on fire is higher than usual, says Dr. Scott Krugman, vice chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the Herman & Walter Samuelson Children’s Hospital at Sinai. “Dangling beards and billowing skirts are particularly dangerous. And wear a coat underneath if it’s going to be a cold night,” Krugman says.

  3. Wearing decorative contact lenses with your costume can increase the risk for a serious eye injury. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which oversees the safety and effectiveness of decorative lenses, says that like with corrective lenses prescribed by a doctor, decorative lenses should not be purchased from a street vendor, flea market or beauty supply, novelty store and Halloween stores. You should always have a prescription for lenses. Decorative lenses can increase the risk for injuries such as corneal abrasion, decreased vision, infection and blindness. Avoid the risk: don’t wear them.

  4. Inspect candy at home before eating and make sure everything is in a wrapper. Check for choking hazards and tampering. Also encourage your children to not eat all of their candy in one sitting to avoid an upset stomach.

  5. Watch out for cars backing out of driveways and be careful crossing streets. Use crosswalks (and your flashlights) so cars can see you. “If you are driving on Halloween, go slow, pay attention and be careful,” Krugman says.

  6. Carry a cell phone with you in case of emergency, Krugman says, “but don’t use it while walking. Pay attention to the sidewalk.”

  7. Children under 12 should be accompanied by an adult. “Larger groups of children are easier to see and safer than smaller ones,” Krugman says. “Only trick or treat in familiar neighborhoods.”