Taking your kids around from house to house in costume on Beggar’s Night to solicit candy is one of the true joys of parenthood. Kids everywhere plan their costumes almost as soon as the first leaves start to turn — and parents often get in on the act, as well.
That wonderful experience can turn into a tragedy, however, if you or your child end up struck by a car. In fact, the risk of being hit by a vehicle and killed more than doubles for kids on Halloween, which makes it critically important to take steps to minimize the potential risk.
Here’s how to do it:
1. Light up your costumes
Glow sticks can be dropped inside the plastic pumpkins the kids carry to draw attention to them. You can also find glow sticks that can be twisted into bracelets and necklaces, as well. Buy a bunch and liberally distribute them to both the children and adults in your group.
Consider adding some reflective tape to the bottoms of the kids’ shoes and the back of their costumes, just for a little extra protection in the dark.
2. Enforce traffic safety rules
Whenever possible, make sure that you use crosswalks to get from one block of houses to the other. If there’s no crosswalk in sight, go to a corner with a streetlight and cross there — after you carefully check for moving traffic.
Make it clear to the kids that they need to stop at every corner and wait for an adult to cross. (This rule is generally applied to any kid under 12 years of age.) If there are older kids heading out on their own, remind them that it is safer to cross the street as a group. They’re more likely to be spotted by any drivers that are around.
3. Skip the masks
Masks are a trip-and-fall hazard in the making. To keep the kids safe, avoid using face masks and stick with face paint, instead. You won’t have to worry that the kids can’t see where they’re going through the mask. That can prevent them from accidentally stepping off the curb and into the path of a car.
All it takes is one distracted driver to cause a serious accident. If you or your child are injured, find out more about your possible right to compensation.