Halloween is the scariest time of the year, and we are not talking about monsters or zombies! On this day, millions of children are out on a trick-or-treat mission, where they are susceptible to the dangers of the road. In Los Angeles County, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children between the ages of 5 and 14. On Halloween, it’s even grimmer. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Halloween ranks as the third-deadliest day overall for pedestrians.
But it’s not all gloom and doom! By practicing a few simple steps, you can help ensure a safe Halloween for all Angelenos. Last Friday, we attended a Halloween Safety event at Apperson Elementary School in Sunland to demonstrate safe Halloween behavior. The event was led by Pat Hines (Safe Moves) and attended by the Los Angeles Fire Department, Los Angeles School Police, and the Los Angeles Department of Transportation.
Check out these key safety tips that were discussed at the event:
1. Opt for Face Paint Instead of a Mask
Masks are awesome, but they can reduce the range of visibility of the person wearing one. Instead, use face paint to get your scary look and maintain maximum visibility. If your costume wouldn’t be complete without a mask, just make sure to remove it when crossing the street, so you can see traffic in either direction.
2. Keep Weapons at Home
Having a sword or other type of weapon may complete the perfect costume, but they are best left at home.
3. Inspect Candy
Guardians, this one is for you. Make sure to toss any open candy or ones with broken seals. Inspect for safety before consumption.
The dark coloring of many costumes and the height of children reduces the visibility of pedestrians. In order to counteract this, make sure to bring flashlights, glow sticks, and/or reflectors on your trip.
So, now you know some best practices for people walking on Halloween. We also want to stress the importance of safe driver behavior. During the Halloween festivities, motorists should obey all traffic laws, be extra aware of our littlest (and scariest!) Angelenos, and use a designated driver. You can see LADOT’s full list of safety tips on Facebook or Twitter.
Through the collective effort of everyone, we hope this Halloween will be full of fun and the right kind of fright, the kind that gets everyone home safe at the end of the night. Happy Halloween!