Staying Safe This Halloween
(MS) — For kids, few days are as fun or as highly anticipated as Halloween. For parents, the day is one of mixed emotions. While they love to see their kids have the fun that’s typical of Halloween, there are also safety concerns surrounding the holiday.
While it might not entirely stop parental worrying until the kids come back home with their bounty of sweets, the following safety tips should help parents get the most fun out of Halloween.
* Choose a safe costume. When it comes to kids and Halloween costumes, getting kids to choose safe costumes can be tough. After all, kids want to be their favorite superhero or movie character and aren’t really worried about how safe those costumes are (or aren’t). When choosing a Halloween costume, be sure that it’s fire-resistant. Because many people have lit jack-o-lanterns on their porch around Halloween, a fire-resistant costume is an absolute necessity.
It’s also important to choose a costume with significant eye holes. Oftentimes, Halloween falls on a school day, and kids are out trick-or-treating in the twilight hours, which is arguably the worst time for drivers and kids alike when it comes to how well they can see. Therefore, a costume must provide kids with adequate peripheral vision so they can see approaching traffic.
* Remind kids about strangers. Even older trick-or-treaters might let their guard down on Halloween. Kids will be ringing doorbells at homes where they don’t know the residents, so parents should go over the basics, such as not entering the homes or vehicles of any people the kids and their parents don’t both know, before kids head out to get their candy. It’s also a good idea for parents to give kids a cell phone when they head out, just in case something happens and kids need to call home. This will keep trick-or-treaters from knocking on a stranger’s door and asking to use their phone, and will enable kids to call home if they feel they’re not safe.
* Don’t light jack-o-lanterns. While it might seem to go against Halloween tradition, a lit jack-o-lantern is a big safety hazard. Kids often crowd onto porches in bunches when trick-or-treating, and that increases the chance a costume could catch fire. If you must light a jack-o-lantern, light it with a light bulb that can be plugged in. That way there are no flames and if a pumpkin is kicked over the plug will likely be pulled out of the outlet in the process.
* Have chaperones whenever possible. As previously mentioned, Halloween typically falls on a weekday, which means kids will be out patrolling the neighborhood for candy after school. That makes it hard for families, many of which consist of two working parents, to arrange for chaperones for trick-or-treating. If possible, take the afternoon off from work to go along with your kids. If you can’t do that, find a babysitter or the parent of a child’s friend to accompany everyone around the neighborhood. Halloween is not as safe as it once was, so taking extra precautions is entirely necessary.
By Susan Shinn email@example.com Churches have long been known as places of sanctuary and respite. Now a growing number of... read more