Halloween is a lot of fun for adults and kids, but nothing ruins the ghoulish night like a trip to the emergency room or a lawsuit. Here are 11 tips to help you balance spooky and safe:
1. Survey all approaches to your home, beginning from the property line. Keep an eye out for hazards, including loose bricks/stones, or holes in the yard.
2. Resist using open flames inside or outside. Use electric light effects, glow sticks, or electric candles instead.
3. Check your smoke alarms and make sure all exits to the house are clear of clutter.
4. Before dark, check for exposed extension cords and make sure cords avoid wet areas.
5. Determine how much darkness you really want. Lighted pathways and porches are both inviting and safer for your guests.
6. Make sure children can see in their costumes! Obstructed vision from masks can keep them from noticing cars, hazards, or other excited kids.
7. Also make sure children can be seen by others. Glow sticks are fun “high visibility” items, especially when costumes are dark (also: reflective velcro bicycling bands around ankles or wrists can be a good idea).
8. Never let a child trick-or-treat alone. If they’re going out unsupervised, make sure they stay in a group.
9. Don’t let pets run loose! Halloween is a scary time for pets and they may become aggressive in protecting your home or themselves.
10. Be allergy-sensitive and skip treats with nuts or peanut butter (or offer allergen free alternatives).
11. Do a “treat check” before letting kids dive in, chucking anything questionable either for safety concerns or spoilage.