Celebrate Safely This Halloween
Halloween is a spooky night, but not just because of the ghosts and goblins - motorists driving drunk plus young pedestrians out on the street is an even scarier combination.
Trick-or-treating from door to door is the most popular way for children to celebrate Halloween, with 73% of parents reporting that their child participates, according to Safe Kids Worldwide. Pedestrian injury tops the list of parent concerns for Halloween night, and for good reason - children are twice as likely to be hit and killed by a car on Halloween than on any other day of the year.
The statistics on Halloween drunk driving are just as haunting. In 2012, 48% of all crash fatalities on Halloween night involved a drunk driver - and Halloween was on a Wednesday. The NHTSA reports that on average, 15% of crash fatalities during the week involve a drunk driver, compared to 30% on the weekends. With Halloween falling on a Friday this year, police departments across the nation are planning to add extra patrols and checkpoints to catch drunk drivers.
To make sure your Halloween is a safe and happy one, make sure to follow the tips below!
- Almost 70% of fatal pedestrian crashes happen at mid-block locations, so always cross at corners and use signals and marked crosswalks when possible. Don’t start crossing from between parked cars - drivers won’t be able to see you, and you’ll have a harder time seeing them.
- Watch for cars backing up. Smaller children may be hard for drivers to see looking out their back window.
- Make yourself as visible as possible. Consider incorporating reflective tape, stickers, or glow sticks into your child’s costume.
- Make sure you can see clearly. Opt for face paint instead of masks, and carry a flashlight to make sure you can spot trip hazards like pumpkins and other yard decorations.
Driving on Halloween Night
- Drive slowly and carefully, especially in residential areas, and watch for trick-or-treaters.
- Make sure your headlights are on, so that you can spot trick-or-treaters from farther away, and so that you are more visible to them.
Never Drive Impaired
- Remember that impairment starts with your first drink. Even under the legal limit, you can experience loss of judgement, limited coordination, decreased response time, and difficulty dividing your attention between two tasks at once. Don’t risk hurting yourself or someone else!
- If you choose to consume alcohol on Halloween night, make sure you’re prepared with a safe ride home. Arrange for a designated driver in advance, take a taxi, or choose a ridesharing service like Uber or Lyft.