NEW YORK (WWTI) — Children fill the streets on Halloween night in search of treats to fill their baskets. AAA released their top tips for navigating the roads to make sure the night is a safe one for trick-or-treaters and drivers.
According to a press release from AAA, the risk of children being injured by motorists increases greatly on October 31. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that Halloween is consistently one of the top three days for pedestrian injuries and fatalities.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that children are four times more likely to be struck by a motor vehicle on Halloween than any other day of the year. To help keep everyone on Halloween night safe, the company provided tips for motorists, parents, and trick-or-treaters.
AAA suggests that motorists slow down in residential neighborhoods, strictly obey traffic signs and signals and drive at least five miles per hour below the speed limit. They also advise drivers to watch for children on roadways, medians, curbs, and crossing the streets since they may be harder to see in dark costumes. The company is also encouraging drivers to be extra careful while entering driveways and alleys and to turn on their headlights to make themselves more visible, even in the daytime.
Parents are advised to make sure youth under the age of 12 are accompanied by an adult and that their trick-or-treaters only travel in familiar areas and along established routes. The company is also encouraging parents to teach their children to only stop at well-lit homes and never to enter a stranger’s home or garage as well as establish a specific time for them to return home. Parents should also follow pedestrian and traffic safety rules, tell children to not eat their candy until they are home, and make sure costumes are flame-retardant and visible with reflective material.
AAA advises trick-or-treaters to be bright by wearing reflective materials and carrying a flashlight. They should also stay on sidewalks if they are available and if not walk on the left side of the road so they can see oncoming traffic. The company also suggests they tell their parents where they are going, only cross streets at the corner, and to look both ways and listen for traffic when crossing. Youths that are going trick-or-treating should do so in a group and not wander off on their own.
The company also suggests party hosts and homeowners be aware of their pathways by providing lots of light and making sure there is no debris. AAA advises that individuals stop serving alcohol at least one hour before their party ends and serve non-alcoholic beverages and food as well. Local car owners should make sure their car is parked in a secure garage or safe area and lock all their doors and windows.