So it’s that time of year again when youngsters of the neighborhood embark on a one night vigil, presenting themselves from house to house, in search of sweet treats. In the midst of greeting the costumed crusaders of Halloween at your house, you discover that you are quickly running short of candy. So in a rush to get ready for the next wave of trick-or-treaters, you hop into your car to quickly get to the closest supermarket. In your rush to back out of your driveway, you almost miss some small object that darts across the driveway, causing you to slam on your brakes. That small object you almost did not see was a little kid dressed up like Darth Vader. While this hypothetical situation had a happy ending, there are many times when it does not end so happy. The National Safety Council has found that the month of October ranks second to August when it comes to deaths caused by motor vehicles. This is just one of the horrors that goes through a parent’s mind as their children eagerly await the nocturnal trek around the neighborhood on Halloween. Fear not, there are some simple things that can be done to help take the fright out of trick-or-treating for parents on Halloween.
To minimize the chances of a driver and your little trick-or-treater having a frightful encounter, there are some simple, yet helpful measures you can implement. Reinforce tried and true safety tips with your kids before they go out and about on the street for Halloween night. Reminding your kids to look in both directions before crossing the street and to do so at a traffic signal or crosswalk will help to make the trick-or-treating venture less scary for all parties involved. Telling your kids to maintain eye contact with drivers on the road can be an effective way to tell them whether or not you intend to cross the street. Unfortunately, if your child has a penchant for using gadgets while walking around, making that eye contact could be a problem. You might make it a requirement that they leave the gadgets at home before embarking on their neighborhood journey for candy. When thinking of costumes, try to steer them away from costumes that might make your child obscured from the view of another vehicle or obstruct how easily your child can see things around them. It goes without saying that adult supervision is highly encouraged during your child’s annual candy vigil around the neighborhood.
The other frightening aspect of trick-or-treating for many parents are the treats themselves. With some precautions, treats can be safe and not scary. If you want to make sure that that your kids don’t try to eat the contents of their trick-or-treat bags before they get home, give them something to snack on or whip up a quick meal for them, before they embark on their Halloween journey. Some treats can have unpleasant surprises you cannot see. Stress to your kids to only take treats that have been commercially wrapped (i.e. Milky Way, Reese’s, etc.); it decreases the likelihood that the treat has been tampered with. If you have kids that are pre-school age that are going on their first trick-or-treating venture, accompany them to make sure they don’t end up with choking hazards as treats (i.e. gum, hard candies, etc.).
Hopefully these safety tips make Halloween more fun and less frightening for everyone in the family. Should you feel that your child has been harmed in some way by negligence this Halloween, feel free to reach out to the Law Offices of Michael Cordova to see what we can do to be of help.
On behalf of everyone at the Law Offices of Michael Cordova, have a safe and happy Halloween!