“Trick or Treat !!!”
You can hear the chorus of voices even before the doorbell rings! Keeping Halloween fun means keeping kid safe. Check out how award-winning author Fritzi Gros-Daillon has used the words “Trick or Treat” to create this easy to use (and easy to remember!) set of 12 safety tips!
T – Traffic Signals
Obey the traffic signals when crossing the streets (you too, mom and dad!). Simply extend your arm opposite the traffic you cross. Most people are pretty excited during Halloween with going put to trick or treat. Kids, in particular, may not be as cautious as we would like.
R – Reflective Tape
Use reflective tape on Halloween costumes. It is very important! Reflective tape will make the kids more visible at night.Only about 18 percent of parents put tape onto the children’s costumes to make sure that drivers can see them when they are out trick or treat-ing.
I – Investigate
Before you let your kids trick or treat on their own, make sure they avoid houses on busy streets or dark houses with no decorations. If you are new to the neighborhood, ask other parents where are the safest streets and best neighborhoods for trick or treating.
C – Choose
Think about those treat choices. Consider healthier snacks like popcorn, pretzels, raisins, sugar-free gum, and the like.
Children under the age of 12 should be accompanied at all times by an adult. It is especially important crossing the street.
O – Only
Only buy costumes make of flame retardant material. If you are making costumes, use polyester and nylon as they are inherently flame retardant.
R – Review
Before the kids dig into their Halloween stash, look over treats, look over the stash together. Although the stories of razor blades and needles may be urban legend, it is a good idea to make sure the candies are fresh and unopened.
T – Try On
It is important that the costume fits properly to avoid tripping over a long dress or cape. Take a couple of minutes before the kids go out to make sure they feel comfortable. They are going to be worn for several hours. For costumes with masks, make sure that the eye holes are big enough to see both front and peripherally and the child can breathe easily.
R – Respect
Respect others and their property. If a neighbor chooses not to participate in treating, they shouldn’t be tricked. Remind them too that vandalism is a crime.
E – Engage
Talk about Halloween safety and etiquette as a family. Reports show that only 1 of every 3 parents talk to their kids about Halloween. Discuss your concerns and show them how important safety and respect are to you.
A – Assess
Think carefully about where you want to put your Jack-o-Lantern and Halloween decorations. Do not put them near steps, walkways or curtains, especially if they are lit with candles. Make sure that electrical wires aren’t in a place where they can become trip hazards. Consider using flashlights or battery-operated candles.
T – Teach
Go over your safety plan. Teach your kids what to do in case of emergency. Make sure they know what to do if they get lost, how to deal with strangers and what to do in case of emergency.
Everyone in the family has a role to play with Halloween safety. Going out to trick or treat is meant to be fun, and being safe ensures that we keep it that way.
Fritzi Gros-Daillon is the CEO and founder of Household Guardians, a resource with home safety tips and solutions for the elderly. Fritzi is a highly successful entrepreneur and savvy veteran in Senior Move Management, Environmental Consulting, and Aging-in-Place Home Safety. Every day interaction with clients and their families fortifies her personal commitment to advance the understanding between
generations about the aging experience.
She is also the author of the award-winning book Grace and Grit: Insights to Real-Life Challenges for Adult Children and their Parents.