The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Opinion

October 30, 2013

Editorial: Treat yourself to a safe Halloween

Rain may dampen our Halloween fun this year.

But that’s all the more reason to be cautious when letting the kids — no matter how old they are — to go knocking on neighborhood doors Thursday.

First, be aware of the hours that local communities welcome trick-or-treaters. Check with your local police or town leaders if you’re not sure.

Now about being safety conscious: Last year there were an estimated 4,600 reports of Halloween-related injuries in the U.S., an increase from 3,500 in the previous year. Injuries can include bruises from falling, burns from flammable costumes to more serious loss of limb or life.

And, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, 60 percent of all injuries were related to pumpkin carving. So beware of that sharp knife in the kitchen.

Indiana State Police are also urging Hoosiers to be safe.

When it comes to costumes:

◆ Keep them short to avoid trips

◆ Consider wearing makeup instead of a vision-blocking mask.

◆ Children should wear light colors or put reflective tape on the front and back of their costumes.

When going out and about:

◆ Older children should not go out alone; go with friends and map out a safe route so parents know where they will be.

◆ Children should stop only at familiar homes where outside lights are on.

◆ Parents should walk with their children and have them be aware of obstacles or decorations in yards.

◆ Go out when there’s still natural light outside. Take flashlights in case the sun sets and travel along well-lighted streets.

◆ Tell your kids to never enter homes or cars of strangers.

And finally, about those candy treats:

◆ Children should not eat treats until they get home.

◆ Check all treats at home in a well-lighted place.

◆ Only eat unopened candies; inspect fruits for anything suspicious.

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