12 Tips for a Safe and Scary Halloween

If your little ghost, goblin, witch, or fairy is getting ready to head out for a trick-or-treat adventure this season, be sure he or she knows that safety always come first – no matter how cool your son or daughter’s costume may be. Here are a few hip tips to instill in your trick-or-treaters this Halloween.

Halloween should be a fun time for your children, but it’s up to you to keep it that way. Fortunately, all it takes is a little common sense to keep your trick-or-treaters healthy and safe for years to come. Encourage your children to have a spookily safe Halloween with these tips.

• Look for a costume that doesn’t drag on the ground. This way, your child won’t trip and fall when wearing his or her new identity. Also, ask your child to wear his or her own shoes, since another person’s shoes (especially if they’re too big) can create a tripping hazard.

• Remind your children that cars always have the right-of-way on the street. Therefore, trick-or-treaters always need to look both ways before crossing the street. As it only takes a second for a car to come around a corner, spending an extra moment to ensure cars aren’t coming may make the difference between safety and grave danger.

• Only cross the street at the corner.

• Never hide or try to cross the road between parked cars.

• Wear light-colored clothing or attach reflective strips so your child is more visible in the dark. Also, be sure to make costume accents like bikes, skateboards, or brooms visible with reflective tape, too.

• Make sure that all scarves or hats are tied and fit appropriately so they do not slip down over your child’s eyes.

• All swords, knives, or similar costume accessories should be flexible.

• If your children go trick-or-treating with friends, be sure they plan a route and tell you where they are going and when they plan to be back. Also, take advantage of technology by asking your kids to carry a cell phone if possible. Make sure your child knows how to call 911 and what situations may require that call to be made.

• Encourage your child to carry a flashlight.

• Look for costumes that are marked as flame retardant. However, remind your child that costumes can be flammable and they should avoid getting too close to fires or candles.

• Only visit homes with porch lights on. Do not go up to houses alone.

• Accept treats at the door but never go into a stranger’s house.

• Opt for face paint rather than masks that can cover your child’s eyes and make it hard for him or her to see. If a mask is a must with your child’s costume, make sure the eye holes are big enough to see out of adequately.

• Always use caution around animals and strangers you don’t know. Do not give anyone you do not know any personal information about you.

• Encourage your children to wait until getting home to eat any of the candy collected. That way you can go over it together and pick out anything that has a broken seal or looks like it has been tampered with in any way. Most communities also offer free candy screenings at fire and police departments.

2009’s Coolest Costumes

Here are 2009’s top 10 costumes, according to a CNBC poll.

10. Athlete
9. Disney princess
8. Batman
7. Pumpkin
6. Star Wars
5. Pirate
4. Spiderman
3. Hannah Montana
2. Witch
1. Princess

Adults can get in on the fun, too. Here are the top 10 costumes for grown-ups.

10. Angel
9. Ghost
8. Political character
7. Batman
6. Nurse
5. Fairy
4. Cat
3. Vampire
2. Pirate
1. Witch

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