Halloween is one of the most anticipated nights of the year for children of all ages, but the grim statistics surrounding the holiday are something parents and drivers should take seriously. On average, twice as many child pedestrians are killed while walking on Halloween compared to any other day of the year.
We encourage parents to talk to their children about Halloween safety, as simple precautions and planning can make it a fun and safe night for all! At Aronfeld Trial Lawyers, we hope you and your loved ones have a safe and Happy Halloween. Here are some important safety tips for parents, children, motorists and property owners to remember this Halloween.
Safety tips for motorists:
• The safest thing you can do is avoid driving on Halloween night. The potential for car accidents involving young children increases four times on Halloween night, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC).
• If you must drive, do not drive distracted. Distracted driving involves more than using a smartphone while operating a vehicle. It is anything that takes your focus off the road for a second. Focus on safe driving and your surroundings, especially in residential neighborhoods where there is trick-or-treating.
• Take extra time to look for kids at intersections waiting to cross the street, on medians and on curbs.
• Always keep an eye out for children. Expect them to dart out in front of traffic. Halloween is an exciting night for them and sometimes they can forget the most basic of safety rules, particularly around vehicles.
• If you are the parent of a teen driver, establish a no driving policy on Halloween night. Young drivers ages 15-25 accounted for nearly one-third of all fatal accidents involving child pedestrians on Halloween.
Safety tips for parents and children:
• Make sure your child is wearing a bright colored costume and reflective tape to be more visible to cars. Glow sticks and flash lights are also a good idea.
• Costumes should fit properly and be made of non-flammable material and should not interfere with walking.
• Choose child-friendly face paint and make-up as opposed to masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.
• Children should leave behind props like wands and swords when trick-or-treating. These are great for photos but leave them home.
• Encourage your child to get an early start trick-or-treating while it is still daylight. Always accompany your child on their route.
• Older kids who may not need adult supervision should trick-or-treat in a small group, never alone. Parents should help in establishing their route and always set a curfew.
• Teach your children to never assume the right of way when it comes to cars, and to make direct eye contact with the driver before crossing the street.
• Instruct your children to only walk on the sidewalk, cross the street at marked crosswalks and use traffic signals to get across the street safely. Lead by example.
• Once the night is over, parents should carefully inspect all candy in their children’s bags to make sure it is safe.
Safety tips for property owners:
• If you are welcoming trick-or-treaters on Halloween, make sure your porch light is turned on.
• Have your property clean of debris, gardening tools and decorations that could be in the path of children and cause a trip and fall. If you have a dog, make sure the pet is properly restrained. Remember, that a property owner who invites trick-or-treaters to their front door has a duty to reasonably protect them from foreseeable injuries.
• Nothing screams Halloween like a jack-o-lantern displayed on the front porch but be mindful of the danger if I child gets too close to the flame. Battery-powered lights are safest for jack-o’-lanterns.
FREE CONSULTATION WITH A MIAMI AUTO ACCIDENT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY
If you or a loved one has been injured by the actions or negligence of another while trick-or-treating on Halloween, it is important to consult with an experienced Miami personal injury attorney immediately. If involved in a car accident, Florida auto accident victims have only 14 days to seek initial medical attention to receive insurance benefits after an accident, so it is important you are seen by a doctor as soon as possible following the accident. Spencer Aronfeld is a Board Certified Trial Lawyer, and he and the lawyers at Aronfeld Trial Lawyers understand Florida’s complex personal injury laws. Contact us today and speak with an experienced Miami auto accident attorney toll free 1-866-597-4529, local 305-441-0440, or by email. We offer a free initial consultation at your home, office, hotel or hospital. Call us today, we are ready to help!