Halloween Safety Tips
from Fire Chief Danny Bowman and the Forsyth County Fire Department
The following tips were provided by the Forsyth County Government. They serve as great reminders for both parents & children – before, during and after the big “trick or treat”.
- Wear bright and reflective costumes. Ensure shoes fit well and costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, entanglement or contact with flame.
- Add reflective tape or striping to costumes and trick-or-treat bags for greater visibility.
- Secure emergency identification (name, address, phone number) discreetly within Halloween attire or on a bracelet.
- Obtain flashlights with fresh batteries for all children and their escorts.
- Plan ahead to use only battery-powered lanterns or chemical lightsticks in place of candles in decorations and costumes.
- This is also a great time to buy fresh batteries for your home’s smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Teach children their home phone number and how to call 9-1-1 if they have an emergency or become lost. Remind them 9-1-1 can be dialed free from any phone.
- Review with your children the principle of “stop-drop-roll”, should their clothes catch on fire.
- Take extra effort to eliminate tripping hazards on your porch and walkway. Check around your property for flower pots, low tree limbs, support wires or garden hoses that may prove hazardous to young children rushing from house to house.
- Learn or review CPR skills to aid someone who is choking or having a heart attack.
- Consider safe party guidelines when hosting an adult or office party.
BEFORE NIGHTFALL ON HALLOWEEN:
- A good meal prior to parties and trick-or-treating will discourage youngsters from filling up on Halloween treats.
- Consider fire safety when decorating. Do not overload electrical outlets with holiday lighting or special effects, and do not block exit doors.
- While children can help with the fun of designing a jack o’ lantern, leave the carving to adults.
- Always keep jack o’ lanterns and hot electric lamps far away from drapes, decorations, flammable materials or areas where children and pets will be standing or walking.
- Agree on a specific time when revelers must return home.
- Remind all household drivers to remain cautious and drive slowly throughout the community.
- Adult partygoers should establish a designated driver.
- A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
- Use a flashlight, so you can see and can be seen by others.
- Stay in a group, walk slowly and communicate where you are going.
- Only trick-or-treat in well-known neighborhoods at homes that have on a porch light.
- Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
- If no sidewalk is available, walk at the farthest edge of the roadway facing traffic.
- Never cut across yards.
- Never enter a stranger’s home or car for a treat.
- Obey all traffic and pedestrian regulations.
- Always walk. Never run across a street.
- Remove any mask or item that will limit eyesight before crossing a street, driveway or alley.
- Do not assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing trick-or-treaters. Just because one car stops, does not mean others will stop.
- Never consume unwrapped food items or open beverages that may be offered.
- No treats should be eaten until they are thoroughly checked by an adult at home.
- Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.
- Wait until children are home to sort and check treats. A responsible adult should closely examine all treats and throw away any spoiled, unwrapped or suspicious items.
- Make sure items that can cause choking (such as hard candies) are given only to those of an appropriate age.
For further details, go to the Fire Department section of the website or contact the Department of Communications.