Keeping kids & pets safe during Halloween
Driving on Halloween requires an extra measure of awareness and caution because very young kids to teens who are excited, distracted, and hard to see fearlessly take to the streets, which are shared by vehicles. Be sure to slow down in residential areas and drive below the speed limit, in order to look for kids who may not see you or pay attention to you.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that kids are four times more likely to be hit by a car on Halloween, than on any other day of the year. The most dangerous time for drivers and children is between 4 PM to 8 PM, when the majority of children are out trick-or-treating. For these four hours one day a year, please put down your cell phone and give the road your full attention and look for kids crossing the street. They may not be at a corner or in a crosswalk. Most important, they may be paying no attention to traffic.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Halloween is one of the top three days for pedestrian injuries and fatalities, making following Halloween safety tips for drivers critical. Be safe this Halloween and follow these Halloween safety tips for drivers in any residential area, just as you want drivers to follow them in your neighborhood where your kids are trick-or-treating.
Halloween Safety Tips for Drivers
- Be especially alert and careful near driveways and parked cars, where children are more likely to dart out in front of you.
- Never pass stopped vehicles, which may be unloading or loading children.
- Turn on your headlights, even if it is light outside.
- Widen your field of vision. Look for children in yards, on porches, and in driveways who may be seconds away from darting out in front of you.
- Be aware that children in dark costumes will be very hard to see at night.
* For more information, see our latest blog entry Halloween Safety Tips for Parents.
Halloween Safety for Pets
We at Advanced Bio Treatment have pets, too, and in our line of work, we see too many very sad accidents that might have been prevented by practicing basic Halloween safety for pets. Pets are family too, however that doesn’t always mean they enjoy everything that we enjoy. While Halloween might be a festive, exciting time for humans, it can be a stressful and dangerous time for our cat and dog companions. Halloween safety for pets means being aware of the dangers Halloween celebrations pose for them.
Keep Halloween plants and pumpkins away from your pets, eating them can cause gastrointestinal problems and even an intestinal blockage. Chocolate, gum, and some artificial sweeteners are poison for dogs and cats. Don’t let children share their treats with your pets. Never leave pets outside on Halloween. They often become victims of mean pranks or sinister rituals that leave them injured or dead. In general, it may be a good idea to keep pets away from trick-or-treaters. Even a friendly dog can knock down and injure a child. Additionally, the strange costumes, crowds, constant door-bell ringing, and noise may make a pet nervous and anxious. Because your pet may feel stress during Halloween celebrations, make sure your dog or cat wears a collar with and ID tag just in case your pet escapes and then gets lost.
Pets may dart out the door when you open it for a trick-or-treater. It’s best to lock your pets in a secure, quiet room during Halloween festivities and don’t take your pet trick-or-treating. Costumes make even familiar people smell different, which may alarm your pet. Costumes, together with the noise and general commotion of Halloween celebrations, may cause a dog to become aggressive and break away from you or bite someone.
Pet Halloween Safety Tips
- Outside cats should be kept inside several days before and after Halloween. Black cats are especially at risk for pranks and cruelty during this time.
- Unless your pet really enjoys being dressed in a costume, don’t do it. If you do dress up your pet, make sure the costume is comfortable and does not restrict your dog’s or cat’s movements, vocalization, or breathing.
- Make sure your pet is not allergic to the costume.
- Make sure the costume contains no small pieces that your pet can chew off and choke on or swallow.
- Keep all candles, wires, and electric cords out of your pet’s reach
Have a fun – and safe – Halloween!