Americans are expected to spend $8.8 billion this Halloween on costumes, candy, and decor, but one expense no one wants is a holiday trip to the emergency room.
Carve pumpkins with care to keep it fun and safe. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reported that in 2017, there was an estimated total of 4,500 Halloween-related accidents from October through November, of which 41 percent were related to pumpkin carving.
- Use spoons to scrape the inside of the pumpkin and markers for tracing to minimize accidents. Only adults should handle the knife for carving.
- Carve with a pumpkin carving kit, rather than a regular knife. Kits are designed to get through thick pumpkin skin and are less likely to get stuck.
- Make sure your pumpkins and tools are clean and dry. Moisture makes things slippery and dangerous.
- Skip the real candle inside your pumpkin, and use glow sticks or artificial pumpkin lights instead.
Dress for Success
Halloween costumes are not created equally! What seems like a fun costume at home may not be the safest bet once you are out of the house.
- Costumes should be flame resistant and fit properly to avoid tripping.
- When selecting fabric, choose bright colors, for increased visibility, and those made from polyester or nylon, which are less flammable than other fabrics and extinguish faster.
- If your costume is too long, cut or pin the costume to avoid falls.
- Your face should be unobstructed by masks, and avoid anything that dulls your senses.
- Test makeup in an inconspicuous place before Halloween to look for any surprise allergies.
- Avoid colored contacts that are available without a prescription. While these are a neat accessory, they have been linked to serious eye infections including permanent vision loss.
- Shoes should be comfortable and slip resistant.
Trick or Treat Tips
Safe Kids Worldwide reports there are twice as many child pedestrian deaths on Halloween than any other day of the year.
- Carry a cell phone when trick-or-treating, so you can call for help immediately.
- An adult should always trick or treat with children under the age of 12.
- For teens going out without an adult, plan the route they will take in advance and agree on a time to come home.
- Only approach homes that are well lit, and walk on sidewalks, never cutting across yards or driveways.
- Watch for fog machines on the trick-or-treat trail. Fog machines can trigger asthma attacks.
- Be mindful of pets in the neighborhood. Even friendly dogs may be nervous with all of the unpredictable Halloween activity.
- Use reflective tape and have every member of your party carry a flashlight.
- Once trick-or-treating has ended, an adult should sort through the candy and toss anything that is unwrapped, homemade, or looks suspicious.
Halloween accidents are usually easily preventable. Stay safe this Halloween!
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