Halloween is officially here, and police are encouraging parents and drivers to be extra cautious.
According to Virginia State Police, Halloween night is considered one of the deadliest nights of the year because of impaired drivers.
Last Halloween weekend, the DMV reported 1,454 crashes on roads in Virginia, resulting in 10 fatalities and 652 people injured.
If you plan on going out to a party on Halloween night, VSP said to keep the following in mind:
- Plan a safe way home before the party starts;
- Find a sober, designated driver and give that person your keys;
- If you’ve been drinking, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation to get home safely;
- If you see a drunk driver, call Virginia State Police by dialing #77 on your cell phone.
Trick or treating on Halloween night is fun, but that also poses a risk.
VSP said children have a greater chance of being hit by a car on Halloween than on any other day of the year.
Authorities are encouraging drivers to slow down and remain alert in neighborhoods and parking lots.
The American Academy of Pediatrics, CDC, and National Safety Council gave the following recommendations for trick-or-treating safety:
- Use flashlights and glowsticks;
- Stay on sidewalks, don’t cross yards;
- Cross streets at the corner, use crosswalks, and do not cross between parked cars;
- Remind children to look left, right, and left again before crossing the street and walking in a parking lot;
- Stop at all corners and stay together in a group;
- Wear bright, flame-resistant clothing;
- Wear reflective tape on costumes and trick-or-treat bags;
- Use non-toxic face paint instead of masks as masks can obstruct a child’s vision;
- Don’t allow children to wear hats that may slide over their eyes;
- Don’t wear long, baggy, loose costumes or oversized shoes to prevent tripping;
- Have children get in and out of vehicles on the curbside, not on the traffic side;
- Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious activity.
If you’re taking your child out to trick or treat, VSP said you can check out the Virginia Sex Offender and Crimes Against Minors Registry to find convicted sex offenders nearby.
For more Halloween safety tips, read this article.