While we all hope that kids in Santa Ana will be safe and have fun on Halloween, the unfortunate reality is that, every year, many children suffer from automobile accidents, falls, cuts, tampered “treats”, and other unnecessary miseries.
The following tips for parents – and Trick-or-Treaters of all ages are courtesy of the Newport Beach Police Department (as the SAPD did not bother to do a Halloween press release):
Know Your Child’s Plans
If you will not be with your child, these items are important to discuss in advance:
- Establish a specific route for trick-or-treating (so that you can find your child, if necessary).
- Discuss who will be accompanying your child while he/she is trick-or-treating.
- Establish a time that your child should return home.
- Focus on Costume Safety
- Makeup is safer than a mask (which can obscure vision).
- Costumes and wigs should be flame-resistant.
- Reflective strips and bright clothing will increase visibility, along with a flashlight.
- Comfortable, well-fitting shoes prevent tripping and other hazards.
- Props and accessories should be made of cardboard, so they won’t injure your child if he/she should fall down.
Follow Critical Safety Tips
- Trick-or-Treat in your own neighborhood.
- Trick-or-Treat in a group of two or more, accompanied by a parent or adult.
- Stick to well-lighted areas.
- Stay on sidewalks and look both ways when crossing the street. Never cross the street between parked cars or mid-block.
- Don’t allow your child to enter ANY house.
- Parents must inspect all treats. Discard fruit or any candy in loose or torn wrappings. If you don’t recognize the candy brand or the packaging seems “off”, then discard those items.
Talk to you Child about Law Enforcement
- Discuss the importance of respecting the property of others.
- Advise your child that throwing eggs and water balloons, or spraying shaving cream, is inappropriate and could be illegal.
If you should discover anything wrong with the “treats” brought home, please call the SAPD at (714) 245-8600 so other parents can be warned and those responsible can be caught. If you have an emergency situation call 911.
Beware and Be Alert for Trick-or-Treaters on Halloween Night
Because of the parties, trick-or-treating, and other festivities, Halloween night can be especially dangerous on our nation’s roads. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, adults between the ages of 21 and 34 had the highest percentage (68%) of fatalities in drunk-driving crashes on Halloween night in 2020. During that same night, 11 pedestrians were killed in drunk-driving crashes.
Whether you are celebrating the spirit of Halloween or Día de los Muertos, here are tips for families to be as safe as possible and share the road safely:
- Slow down and watch out for more foot traffic in residential neighborhoods.
- Take extra time looking for trick-or-treaters at intersections and entering/exiting driveways.
- Never drive distracted or impaired.
- If you are heading to a local bar, restaurant or house party and plan to drink, bring the designated sober driver with you, use a ride-hailing service, or stay the night.
Parents and trick-or-treaters
- Make sure costumes fit to prevent trips and falls.
- Decorate costumes and bags/buckets with reflective tape.
- Have kids use flashlights or glow sticks to make it easier for drivers to see them.
- Walk on sidewalks when available. Avoid darting into the street or crossing between parked cars.
- Stick to familiar, well-lit routes.
- Look both ways before crossing the street. Make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.