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Halloween safety tips from Sarnia Police

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The Sarnia Police Service (SPS) is offering safety tips and advice to ensure every member of the community has a great evening whether they are trick-or-treating or attending a spooky get together with friends.

1. Slow down! All drivers need to significantly reduce their speed on Halloween. Please remember, there will be numerous kids running across neighbourhood streets focused on one thing…candy! Expect an increase of pedestrian traffic on city streets, and because of the excitement of Halloween, they may not be paying attention to vehicle traffic. Please exercise caution as weather conditions may also reduce driver visibility.

2. Children should walk, not run from house to house. Avoid “Zig-Zagging” by staying on the sidewalk or at the side of the road facing traffic, cross the road at the corner and always look both ways before crossing the road.

3. When approaching the door, avoid tripping hazards by not running across front yards or over any landscaped areas. Use paved pathways whenever possible.

4. Make your home safe for trick-or-treaters. Remove all objects around your house that could cause children to trip or fall. Turn your outside light on so children will know they can visit your home. Do not feel obligated to answer your door if you do not feel safe.

5. Children should stay in known, well-lit areas and should only visit homes that have their outside lights on. Children should never go inside homes or cars. Do not go anywhere with a stranger.

6. Choose brightly coloured clothing that will be clearly visible to motorists. For greater visibility, carry a flashlight and add retro-reflective tape to the costume.

7. Halloween can be a chilly night so make sure costumes are loose enough to be worn over warm clothing. Make sure clothing is not so baggy or long that trick-or-treaters can trip over their costumes.    

8. Make-up and face paint are better than wearing a mask, which can restrict breathing and/or vision. If you choose a mask, make sure it allows the child to see and breathe easily.

9. Look for costumes, beards and wigs labeled “flame resistant” nylon or heavy weight polyester costumes are best. Flame resistant does not mean “fire proof”. Avoid costumes with baggy sleeves or flowing skirts to minimize the risk of contact with candles and other fire sources.

10. Keep candles, jack-o-lanterns, matches and lighters in a safe place that children cannot reach.

11. Swords, knives, and similar accessories should be made of soft, flexible material.

12. Tell your children not to eat any goodies until you see them. Make sure your child eats dinner or has a healthy snack before they go out so they will be less tempted to eat their candy along the way.

13. Examine treats before you eat them! Goodies are the best part of Halloween, but before your children begin to eat their loot, make sure you examine it first. Throw out any treats that are not wrapped including those in torn or loose packages. Inspect commercially wrapped treats for signs of tampering, such as an unusual appearance or discolouration, tiny pinholes, or tears in wrappers. Throw away anything that looks suspicious. If you find something that has been tampered with, please contact police.

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