SARASOTA COUNTY – As children get caught up in the excitement of Halloween, they can sometimes forget to be careful, leaving them more prone to accidents and injuries. That’s why Sarasota County Fire Chief Michael Regnier offers the following tips for keeping kids safe at Halloween:
- Help the child pick out or make a costume that will be safe. Make sure it is fire resistant. The eye holes should be large enough for good peripheral vision.
- If jack-o’-lanterns are set on the porch with candles in them, make sure that they are far enough out of the way so that kids’ costumes won’t accidentally be set on fire.
- Make sure if the child is carrying a prop, such as a knife or a pitchfork, that the tips are smooth and flexible enough to not cause injury if fallen on.
- Make sure the child carries a flashlight, glow stick or has reflective tape on his or her costume to make them more visible to cars.
- Young children should be accompanied by an adult or responsible teen.
- Kids always want to help with the pumpkin carving. There are many kits available that will make pumpkin carving safe. Let the kids clean out the pumpkin and draw a face on it, which an adult can carve for them.
- Treat kids to a Halloween dinner prior to trick-or-treating. They will be less likely to eat the candy they collect while walking, helping to prevent choking, and giving you an opportunity to inspect their candy.
- Teaching kids basic everyday safety, such as not getting into cars or talking to strangers, looking both ways before crossing the street and crossing when the lights tell them to, will help make them safer when they are out trick-or-treating.