Tonight, Trick or Treat will be observed in Gahanna and Mifflin Township from 6 to 8 p.m. The Mifflin Township Police and Fire Department’s remind parents that, according to Safe Kids USA, kids are twice as likely to be hit and killed by a car on Beggar’s Night than any other night of the year. In their excitement, children aren’t always paying as much attention as they should be and, as it gets dark, it is difficult for for drivers to see them.
As you’re driving home from work tonight, bear in mind there will be children running around in our neighborhoods. For parents, the key to staying safe is visibility. Whether it’s the child’s costume that illuminates or a flashlight, there are lots of options. Get your child a set glow sticks for your wrist, walk with them using the flashlight on your cell phone, or put some reflective tape around their ankles and wrists.
Parents, please discuss the following safety tips with your children before venturing out:
– Children should not go out alone on Halloween. A responsible adult should escort the children while trick or treating.
– Children should not eat any treats until they have been examined by an adult.
– All fruit should be cut and and closely examined before eating.
– Children should never enter a stranger’s home or accept rides from strangers.
– Stay on the main roads; do not take shortcuts through backyards or alleys.
– Instruct children not to stray from their group.
– Adult escorts should carry flashlights.
– Children should walk, not run, while trick-or-treating.
– Props such as toy guns or swords should be made of pliable material; realistic replica firearms should never be used.
– Use sidewalks whenever possible, not the street, for walking and look in all directions before crossing the street.
Additionally, Mifflin Township Firefighters remind parents that while some of the most classic Halloween decorations include hay bales, dried cornstalks, Jack-O-Lanterns and candles, many of those items pose a huge fire risk.
According to the National Fire Protection Association decorations were the item first ignited in an estimated average of 860 reported home structure fires per year. Nearly half of decoration fires in homes occurred because the decorations were too close to a heat source. These fires caused an estimated average of one civilian death, 41 civilian injuries and $13 million in direct property damage per year. Forty-one percent of these incidents were started by candles; one-fifth began in the living room, family room, or den.
Whether you have a little super hero or fairy princess in tow, be sure to discuss these safety tips with your children and enjoy the evening.