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Tips to keep your child safe while trick-or-treating
halloween
While Halloween can be a fun time for children to dress up and collect candy, trick-or-treating can also be dangerous. - photo by istockphoto.com/kali9

The day for trick-or-treating is here and parents should be aware that while it can be a fun time for children to dress up and collect candy, it can also be dangerous. Before taking your children out on Halloween, here are several safety tips to know about and follow.

Have your children wear flame-resistant costumes

While it is much safer to use a glow stick or a tea light with batteries in your jack-o-lantern, many people still use candles to light the pumpkins on their doorsteps. Children should wear flame-resistant costumes so they can safely maneuver around those flames while trick-or-treating, according to a news release from the American Red Cross.

Use a flashlight and reflective items

Trick-or-treating is often done in the dark, so children and their parents should always have a flashlight to walk around safely. Kids should also have some type of reflective tape on their costume — especially if it's dark colored — to ensure that passing motorists will see them when they cross the street, the American Red Cross said.

Don’t let children under 12 go alone

Parents should always accompany children under the age of 12 while they are trick-or-treating, according to a National Safety Council news release. Parents should also plan a trick-or-treating route for their kids and avoid areas they are unfamiliar with or that are not well-lit.

Children should also travel in groups and never trick-or-treat alone.

Be cautious of which treats to eat

With all the candy and tasty treats that children acquire on Halloween, parents need to make sure to feed their children a meal before they go out so they aren’t hungry and don’t make themselves sick with too much sugar, advises to the National Safety Council.

Parents should also insist that treats be brought home for inspection before anything is eaten, and tell children to only eat factory-wrapped treats. Avoid any homemade treats unless you know the cook well. And “when in doubt, throw it out,” the National Safety Council says.

Always stay on the sidewalk

Children and parents should always travel on the sidewalk while trick-or-treating. Kids should stay out of the road unless crossing the street, and always use a designated crosswalk area. If there are no sidewalks, walk on the far edge of the road facing traffic, the National Safety Council says.

Children should stay on the sidewalk and avoid crossing the lawn where unseen objects and uneven ground can present tripping hazards.

Always stay on the porch and only visit homes with lights on

Parents should tell their children to never enter a home where they are trick-or-treating unless they know the family well, the American Red Cross said. The children should accept the treats on the porch and should only visit homes that have their porch lights on.

By using these guidelines, parents and children will have a safer experience this Halloween.

Contact Faith Heaton Jolley at fheaton@ksl.com.