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Thursday, October 31, 2013

RCMP and AHS Halloween Safety Tips

Don't get into a car with someone you don't know.
RCMP Halloween Safety Tips

Every year in late October, people get together to celebrate Halloween. Costumes, parties and trick or treating are all part of the fun; but as always, there are some things to watch out for. So, here are some helpful tips to ensure that you have a fun filled and safe Halloween.

When you decide to go out trick or treating :
  • Collect candy in a group. Don’t trick or treat alone.
  • Bring a flashlight; some areas might not have any street lights.
  • Use make up instead of wearing a mask; that way your sightline is not blocked. If you do go with a mask, cut the eye holes a little bit bigger. 
  • Make sure that your costume props cannot be used as weapons.
  • Bring a cell phone in case of an emergency.
  • Be careful around people you don’t know. While some people may really get into the Halloween spirit and want to scare everyone, others may have more worrisome intentions.
  • Don’t eat any unpackaged candy.
  • Don’t smash pumpkins and egg houses. While it may seem like harmless fun, this is vandalism that can lead to serious consequences.
  • Don’t take any chances by getting into a car with someone you don’t know, even if you already met at the party.

If you decide to spend your evening at a Halloween party:
  • Make sure to use the buddy system while at a party. Stay with at least one of your friends at all times, especially if don’t know many people.
  • Be cautious of underage drinking, or any illegal drugs that may be circulating around the party.
  • Make sure to never leave your drink unattended.
  • Don’t accept a ride home from someone at the party, especially if you think they may have been drinking or doing drugs.
  • Agree on a time and a place for you and your friends to meet in the event that you get separated so that you can all go home together.
  • Call your parents or a trusted adult right away if you feel uncomfortable and want to be picked up.

Regardless of what you are doing, make sure you are dressed for the weather which is always unpredictable in late October. Halloween is a day when people can unwind and have a blast, dress up and be spooky; but always remember to be safe while enjoying the night.




Alberta Health Services Halloween Safety Tips

Tips for parents and caregivers

Halloween can be an exciting time for children and with the distraction of candy and costumes, safety rules can easily be forgotten. In fact, research shows that distractions can increase a child’s chances of being struck by a car. Check out these simple tips to keep Halloween night a safe night for all.
  1. Children under the age of nine should be accompanied by an adult or responsible older child since they lack the developmental skills to cross the street on their own. This is a year-round tip that will help keep your child safe while you share good pedestrian habits and pass on a legacy of safety-minded behaviour.
  2. Teach your child to stop at the curb, look left, right and left again, and to listen for oncoming traffic. This vital skill is especially important when children are distracted and excited. Never rely on traffic signals alone – use your eyes and ears to make sure it’s safe to cross.
  3. It’s unsafe to cross between parked cars or other obstacles – always cross at crosswalks, street corners or intersections. Many injuries occur when children run out between parked cars, but even at intersections it’s vital that children practice tip #2.
  4. Stay on the sidewalk or path when walking from house to house and if there is no sidewalk, walk beside the road, facing traffic so drivers can see you. From a very young age, children can be taught that roads are for cars and sidewalks are for kids. If your community has no sidewalks, walking beside the road at night can be very dangerous – adult accompaniment and flashlights are a must, regardless of the child’s age.
  5. Select costumes with bright colours to increase your child’s visibility and choose face paint instead of masks. Masks can make it hard for your child to see properly and often restrict peripheral vision, making it difficult to check for oncoming traffic before crossing a road.

Tips for drivers
Halloween means that there will be more children out on the streets. Drivers need to take extra care.
  1. Drive slowly in residential areas where children are more likely to be trick-or-treating. Did you know that drivers cannot accurately judge their own speed when driving? The higher the speed, the less likely you are to see a child pedestrian, and the harder it is to stop quickly.
  2. Watch out for kids, many of whom may be wearing costumes with masks that make it difficult for them to see. With the excitement of Halloween, children may forget simple pedestrian safety rules. They have a tendency to dart out in the most unexpected places – the most common being between parked cars. Remember also that costumes can limit a child’s vision and they may not be able to see your vehicle.
  3. Reduce your distractions and stay alert. All your concentration should be on the road, not diverted by cell phones or loud music.
  4. Remember to enter and exit driveways slowly and carefully. Excited trick-or-treaters may run on sidewalks, or dart out unexpectedly. Proceed with caution, when entering or exiting the roadway.

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