Tips for Halloween Safety

halloween safety checklist

Halloween Safety Checklist

When choosing or making Halloween costumes for your children

  • Plan costumes that are bright and reflective. Costumes, wigs and accessories should have a label indicating they are flame resistant.  Make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, tangling, or contact with flame.
  • Because a mask can limit or block eyesight, non-toxic and hypoallergenic makeup and decorative hats are a safer alternative.

  • Consider adding reflective tape or striping to costumes and trick-or-treat bags for greater visibility.
Include emergency identification (name, address, phone number) inside the costume or on a bracelet.
Think twice before using simulated knives, pitchforks, guns or swords. If such props must be used, be certain they do not appear authentic and are soft and flexible to prevent injury.
Provide flashlights with fresh batteries for children and their escorts.

Before trick or treating

  • Have a full meal before trick or treating. Children will be less likely to eat the candy they collect before you have a chance to check it for them.  Be creative and make it a “spooky” dinner!
  • A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
  • Provide and use flashlights, so children can see and be seen by others.

Before leaving the house, remind trick or treaters to:

  • stay in a group, walk slowly and communicate to each other and with the adult where they are going.
  • trick-or-treat only in well known neighborhoods at homes that have a porch light on.
  • remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk; don’t cut across yards or use alleys.
  • never enter a stranger's home or car for a treat.
  • always walk. Never run across a street.
  • remember that not all drivers can see children crossing the street. Just because one car stops, doesn't mean others will.
  • never eat unwrapped food items or open beverages, and although tampering is rare, every trick or treater should bring candy home to be inspected before eating anything.

Older children going out without adult supervision should:

  • know where to reach parents and when to be home.
  • plan a route with parents beforehand and stick to it so you know where they're going.
  • not bicycle, roller-blade or skateboard.
  • wear a wristwatch and carry coins to make a phone call if necessary.
  • be reminded that 9-1-1 can be dialed free from any phone.
Safe decorating suggestions
  • Small children shouldn't be allowed to use sharp knives to carve pumpkins.  Kits that come with tiny saws work better then knives and are safer, but it's safest to just let the kids clean out the pumpkin and draw a face on it, which an adult can carve for them.
  • Always keep jack o' lanterns and hot electric lamps far away from drapes, decorations, flammable materials or areas where children and pets will be standing or walking.
  • Battery powered jack o' lantern candles are safer than wax candle flames.
  • Do not overload electrical outlets with holiday lighting or special effects, and do not block exit doors.
  • Remove tripping hazards on your porch and walkway. Check your property for flower pots, low tree limbs, support wires or garden hoses that may prove hazardous to trick or treaters.

Pets need to be safe, too!

If possible, keep all dogs and cats indoors on the evening of Halloween, when lots of people, scary costumes, and loud noises might cause them distress.  If they must be outside, be sure that your pets are wearing collars and proper identification tags.