Spooky decorations, creepy costumes, and candy-filled visions spur kids into a fun-filled frenzy on Halloween. But don’t let easily avoidable hidden dangers spoil the evening for your little ghouls and booys! Here are 10 Halloween safety tips to keep fright night safe and fun for kids of all ages.
1. Have a Get-Home Plan
Whether trick-or-treating, attending a party, or stopping by the neighborhood carnival, have a plan that works for everyone in case of separation. If away from home, identify a location to go if separated from the group, and make sure everyone has their cell phones to keep in touch.
Activating tracking apps on older kids’ phones lets you monitor their location. Securing a GPS tracking device in costumes is a huge help if little ones become separated. At the very least, attach parents’ names and phone numbers inside younger kids’ clothing.
2. Review the Safety Basics
Emphasize to kids that Halloween night is no different regarding safety. Remind them to avoid talking to strangers—other than to say trick-or-treat and thank you, of course. Plus, don’t approach dark houses, stay on well-lighted streets on a pre-approved route, and take extra care when crossing streets.
3. Fill Trick-or-Treaters Up Before Heading Out
Send trick-or-treaters off with a full tummy so they won’t be as tempted to eat candy before it’s inspected. After all, Trick-or-treating is hard work!
4. Have a Trick-or-Treating Plan
Accompany young children when trick-or-treating and send older kids out in a group with route guidelines and check-ins via text or call. Don’t forget spooky flashlights or glow sticks and necklaces. These are fun for the kids and help them see and be seen.
5. Decorate With the Littlest Ghouls in Mind
Make yard decorations safe and inviting to all. Secure electrical cords and strings out of reach, use glow sticks, solar lights, or battery-operated candles as light sources instead of real candles, and keep walkways clear and accessible.
If creating a particularly scary haunted yard, consider a less-scary approach for younger trick-or-treaters—unless you want a bunch of leftover candy. When handing out candy, include toddler-friendly goodies like single-serving cookie or animal cracker packs in the candy bowl. Parents will thank you!
6. Costume for Comfort and Halloween Safety
Dress kids in temperature-appropriate costumes, and check that they have a good range of vision and movement and are easily seen in the dark. Accessories like swords, knives, and fairy wands should be blunted or flexible to prevent injury.
Do costumes call for a spooky glow? Flameless battery-operated wax candles create a ghoulish candle-lit effect and are safe to carry. Or, check out fun flashlights with spooky sounds—kids love them.
7. Carve a Safer Jack o’Lantern
Let little ones scoop out the insides and draw the face. These are always the best designs! But leave the carving to adults or older kids. Create a safer spooky light using glow sticks in two or three colors or battery-operated candles inside jack-o’lanterns.
8. Check Candy Before Eating
Inspect candy before allowing kids to eat. Discard candy with broken wrappers, packaging that can be opened and resealed, or that appears tampered with in any way.
9. Keep Pets Inside All Night
Strange visitors at the door, increased traffic, and pet-level decor can be hazardous to pets and people. Keeping pets inside, or at least secured on a leash, is much safer and less stressful for pets, pet owners, and visitors.
10. Prepare for Unexpected Scares
Have a portable first aid kit ready to treat minor scrapes, burns, or cuts, and include medications for asthma or allergies.
That’s a Wrap
With these Halloween safety tips in mind, your kids can have a great time trick-or-treating without worry or scary incidents. Want more tips and info on keeping kids safe this Halloween? Check out more tips and get a printable Halloween safety tips checklist on the SafeKids Worldwide website.