Halloween and trick-or-treating is an exciting time of year for kids, parents and neighbors alike! To help ensure you have a safe time, we have a few safety tips to keep in mind.

Get your home ready for trick or treaters

Make sure your home is safe for visiting trick-or-treaters. If you have decorations that require electricity, remove cords from sidewalks or areas that could trip visitors. Check your outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs to ensure that visitors can see easily.

If there’s snowy weather, shovel snow and clear a path for visitors. Also, restrain pets or keep them indoors so they don’t accidentally get outside.

Costume considerations

When shopping for costumes, there are a lot of safety considerations to keep in mind. Add an element that is bright and reflective, which will allow vehicles to more easily see kids walking along the roads. Consider adding reflective tape or striping to costumes and trick-or-treat bags for greater visibility.

It’s also important to make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping or entanglement. If the costume includes a mask, make sure it fits properly to avoid slipping over eyes.

Trick-or-treating safety tips

During the evening’s festivities, young children should always be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult on their neighborhood rounds. During the route, make sure that you bring flashlights to provide light and to help drivers see your group. Remember to only visit homes that have their porch lights on.

If your group is driving, drive slowly and watch for pedestrians. Children can move in unpredictable ways, especially when excited.

If older children are going alone, plan and review the route that is acceptable to you. Agree on a specific time when they should return home. If possible, insist they carry a cellphone for quick communication.

As you travel around on your trick-or-treating route, keep these safety tips in mind:

  • Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
  • If no sidewalk is available, walk at the far edge of the roadway facing traffic.
  • Never cut across yards or use alleys.
  • Only cross the street as a group in established crosswalks. Never cross between parked cars or driveways.
  • Don’t assume the right of way; motorists may have trouble seeing trick-or-treaters. Just because one car stops, doesn’t mean others will!