I remember my mom sending me off with a hug and a bevy of Halloween safety tips each October 31. It didn’t take long to learn the Halloween safety drill: Watch where I was walking, stick with my group and report home right after the candy acquiring ended.
She was right to be cautious—after all, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that Halloween is the most dangerous night of the year for kids walking the roadways.
And there are other Halloween safety dangers, like tripping and fire hazards. It seems like I’m far more aware of these risks than I was back then—must be a product of being older and wiser.
Fortunately, you can lower the risks of something bad happening with a few precautions. Here’s a checklist of things you’ll want your little candy collectors to have.
- A trip-resistant hem. Have kids take a test run in their costumes, and shorten any that might cause a trip. Also make sure they have enough room in there to move freely.
- A nonrestrictive mask or helmet. Make sure your trick-or-treater has a full line of vision outside of their mask or helmet. (Even better: nontoxic, hypoallergenic face paint.)
- Comfortable shoes. Prevent injuries by letting comfort, not cuteness, win the day.
- Flexible props. Make sure any swords or other props are made of soft plastic or rubber that bends.
- Flame-resistant costumes, wigs and accessories. Check the labels to find out for sure.
- Reflective tape. Stick a couple pieces on your kid’s costume so cars will have an easy time spotting them.
- A flashlight with fresh batteries. Winter’s coming, and it’s dark this time of year. Make sure to have a flashlight on hand to illuminate the way.
- Emergency identification. Secure your child’s name along with your phone number and address on a bracelet or in the costume. Also have them memorize your phone number and know to call 9-1-1 in the event of an emergency.
Everything checked off? Then let the candy bonanza begin!