Halloween's Truly Scary Stories and How to Stay Safe
It’s the time of year when people both young and old make fun out of the frightening. Whether you love a good ghost story, haunted house, or creepy costumes, Halloween is the moment you’ve been waiting for. It is, however, important to keep in mind that there are very real dangers to Halloween, and Halloween accidents are completely unrelated to that guy in the hockey mask on your television.
There are Halloween decorating risks, including hand and finger injuries sustained while carving pumpkins. Pumpkins or other decorations with live flames can also cause burns or fires. Though we don’t often think about costume injuries as being very serious, a bad trip and fall over a too-long costume can be catastrophic under the wrong circumstances, leaving the person with a head injury or even worse. Eye injuries are common occurrences in emergency room at Halloween time due to the large number of costumes with sharp stick-type props (swords, etc.).
By far, the most hazardous part of Halloween is the actual trick-or-treating. No, I’m not referring to the (largely) urban legends about poisoned candy. With over forty million trick-or-treaters walking around our neighborhoods and communities in the United States, there is a significant risk of those young people being hit by a car. It can be dark and children are more prone to getting excited and running across a street without looking. For drivers, it can be very difficult to see children who are wearing dark costumes.
In fact, Safe Kids USA reports children are more than twice as likely to be killed in a pedestrian accident on Halloween than at any other time during the year. Most Halloween accidents occur between 4 p.m. and 10 p.m., prime trick-or-treating hours.
Parents Need to Be Proactive to Keep Children Safe
There are many things children and parents can do to increase their safety in the midst of great Halloween fun. Below are just a few examples of how to keep your ghosties and goblins from getting hurt in a Halloween accident during October 31 festivities.
- Trick-or-Treat with a Grown-Up. If your child is under 12, supervision is critically important.
- Cross streets where pedestrians are expected, such as corners and crosswalks. It’s best if children make eye contact with drivers prior to crossing the road.
- Teach your child never to dart out into the street.
- Avoid distractions, including electronics.
- Ensure your child does not cross the road from between two parked cars. Other drivers may not see him or her until it is too late.
- Make sure your child is visible. Use light colored costumes, reflective tape, and glow sticks or flashlights to make sure drivers can see them.
- Be cautious with masks and double-check that your child’s vision is not impeded in any way by their costume or a mask.
Despite taking every safety precaution, none of us can completely erase the risk of injury during Halloween (or any day really). If your child is injured in an accident while trick-or-treating or otherwise engaged in daily activities, and you believe another person may be at fault for the accident, call the personal injury attorneys at Wagner Reese. We have decades of experience fighting for injured Hoosiers, and we will fight for you when you need us. Call (888) 204-8440 today for a completely free consultation.