Excitement and excessive amounts of sweets can lead to a chaotic time on Halloween, so follow our top tips to keep all your little monsters safe on the night.
1. Plan a route in advance
Trick or treating could take you several streets away from your house, which can cause sore feet and tired legs. Avoid long treks by mapping out a route before leaving the house. Stick to paths that you and your child are familiar with to avoid getting lost.
2. Avoid masks
Masks can make it difficult for your child to see or breathe. Why not use non-toxic make-up to complete the costume instead and paint a mask on.
3. Check your child’s sweets
Sort through their sweets at the end of the night, throw away any sweets that are not in their original wrapping, or that look as though they may have been opened. Better to be safe than sorry!
4. Let there be light!
Make it a rule to trick or treat only in well-lit areas. Stay on streets that you are familiar with, and avoid shortcuts through dark alleys. If you're not sure where a street goes or whether it is safe, don't take a chance on it.
5. Pets alert
No matter how much they beg and give you those soppy puppy dog eye, don’t feed any Halloween treats to your pets. It will make them ill and please make sure your children know this too.
6. Stay in a group
Always travel in groups. Be sure there are at least 3 of you at all times.
7. Stranger danger
Don’t visit houses that are not well lit. Never go inside a stranger’s house.
8. Be reflective
Carry a white bag or pillowcase for your sweets, and add some reflective tape. Make sure cars can always see you. And carry a phone in case of emergencies.
9. Use flame-resistant materials
As it is Halloween, your child is very likely to be near candles, lanterns, and other decorative flames. Polyester and nylon are both flame-resistant materials, for example. When picking out your child's costume always look for the label "flame-resistant" and make sure there is a visible CE mark.
REMEMBER: It’s safer to choose costumes made up of one layer of heavier materials as opposed to flimsy, layered, frilly ones. Thinner materials made up of lots of layers tend to burn much faster because more oxygen can get to the fire.
10. Don’t forget the shoes!
Your little pumpkin doesn’t need to wear fancy shoes; leave them at home and pop them in sturdy footwear that they won’t trip in. Remember that many shoes that come with costumes are NOT meant for outdoor use; make sure your child is wearing shoes that fit properly and have proper grip to them, so that they don’t slip and fall. Also so they can comfortably survive the night walking around in their shoes.