Halloween Safety Tips

Next to Christmas, Halloween is the favorite time of year for my children. They dress up in their costumes weeks before the big day and they practically drool all over themselves thinking of all the sugary goodness about the enter their orbits. And what’s not to love? Halloween is a perfect time to be creative and hang out with friends and, like most holidays these days, Halloween lasts for weeks, with all the party’s and activities.

But the key to a happy and treat-filled Halloween, is safety. With kids and cars everywhere on Halloween night, the event can be a frightening one for many parents. Each year, my wife sit down with our kids, ages 7 & 5, before we go trick-or-treating to remind them of the rules of the road. Here are a few:

*No running. With scores of children flooding our neighborhood, it’s easy to lose track of one of our boys. Add to the chaos the inability to immediately identify your child, because they’re wearing a costume, and it can be a terrifying ordeal.

*Stay with an adult. This is a natural outgrowth of rule #1. Our kids, like most, are excited to travel from house to house quickly, hopeful that the candy at the next house is even better than the one before. But we urge our kids to stay near us because otherwise, it gets out of hand.

*Don’t go in people’s houses. Our oldest is a people person. He loves to talk and engage anyone, about virtually any subject. If someone invited him inside their home to see their toys/game system/dishwasher, he’d probably do it. We know most of our neighbors but, still, it’s inappropriate for kids to walk right into someone’s home and we need to make this abundantly clear on a night like Halloween.

*Don’t eat the candy until an adult looks at it. With all those treats at their fingertips it takes the discipline of a saint to resist immediately chowing down on the chocolate inside their goody bag. But my wife and I are careful parents and we want to check each piece of candy that fills their container. They can ask us if they can eat a piece or two but we have to be able to inspect the candy first.

* Safe costumes. If our kids had their way, they’d wear the biggest, most ostentatious costumes they could find. That’s just not safe. Try to select costumes that allow your kids to walk, wear comfortable shoes and stay cool and hydrated throughout the evening.

* Follow outdoor safety rules. By now you’ve instilled in your children ways to make good choices when crossing the street and dealing with traffic. Those rules are more important than ever on a night like Halloween. Please make sure that your children are looking both ways before crossing the street and that they’re crossing at designated intersections.

* Be wary of strangers. There are many ways that people with bad intentions might try to take advantage of the Halloween festivities. Too many ways to enumerate here. But it is important to remind your children of stranger danger and the importance of not talking to or getting into a car with a stranger. If you’ve got a close eye on your kids, they’ll be fine. That’s one more reason why it’s important to spend this evening with your children, sharing in the enjoyment.

There are many more safety tips available online. You can find some at safekids.org and most local police departments will also offer tips and advice for parents.

Finally, have fun out there! Enjoy the ghosts and goblins!

Photo credit: Foter.com

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About Happiest Daddy

Two boys, one wife and a ton of material. I live for family and I’m one of the most blessed people you will ever meet.

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