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Friendly tips to keep kids safe this Halloween

Halloween is practically here. The leaves are turning and everyone is starting to feel celebratory. It has the potential to be the most fun night of the year for kids, but with great fun can come great calamity. It is unfortunate, but accidents have become a big part of Halloween; it has become the most dangerous evening for children involved in pedestrian accidents in the United States, according to the CDC. Consider a few friendly tips to make the night a little safer without sacrificing any of the festivities.

Stay visible

A very fortunate side of Halloween festivities is that the coolest and most appealing costumes in the dark are usually safer for trick-or-treating. Lighting effects and colors that glow in the dark will make it easier for drivers to see kids on the road. Creativity is your friend, so consider glow sticks, lights, flashlights, reflective tape or anything else non-flammable you can find that makes an impression.

Prevent fires

Unfortunately, Halloween is a holiday with the highest fire risk of the year. Of course, the best advice is to avoid candles in your decorating and jack-o-lanterns. However, this is not always possible and you can't control what your neighbors or others use in their décor. To increase safety, make sure kid's costumes are not excessively baggy or dragging on the ground. This keeps them from unintentionally brushing into candles, and it makes it easier to walk in the process. Finally, avoid decorations that go up in flames easily. Dried leaves, papier mâché and a few other common options might look great, but they come with a risk.

Travel safely by car or by foot

This is the big one. You hear these tips every year, and still, accidents happen. There are two fronts to being safe on the roads and sidewalks. For drivers, concede to having to drive slowly this one night of the year and be very vigilant. Kids are unpredictable, and congestion is typical during peak trick-or-treating hours. Be on the lookout for kids, particularly in residential areas, by parks or near schools. In addition, for young adults, Halloween is a popular drinking night. Drivers going to parties should always have a designated driver. You cannot be too safe behind the wheel.

For pedestrians, always be aware of your surroundings and any vehicles that may be present. When trick-or-treating or going to and from Halloween parties, it is important to stay on sidewalks, cross the street in marked walkways, look and relook both ways before crossing the street and to avoid crossing the street in between parked cars. Safety in numbers is a good idea, but younger children should always have an adult present with the group. Remember basic safety tips for you and your kids and you can have a fun and safe night this Halloween.

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