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Keeping Kids Safe This Halloween

Posted on October 26, 2012 by U.S. Fire Administrator Ernest Mitchell

En Español

photo of children in costumes bobbing for apples

When purchasing a Halloween costume, make sure the label reads "Flame Resistant."

Are your children excited about Halloween? Have they been planning their Halloween costumes for months? Have you helped them map out a trick or treating route around the neighborhood? Do you know that almost twice as many children are injured in pedestrian accidents on October 31, than on any other day of the year?

Over the course of more than 40 years in the fire service, I have talked to firefighters and emergency medical personnel who have had the sad duty of bringing emergency medical care to trick-or-treaters. There is so much that you can do to help keep your children safe on Halloween; beginning with ensuring that you or a trusted adult accompany children while they are out trick-or-treating:

Halloween is associated with a surge in the incidence of fires, due to arson and the use of candles. Have you seen the new flameless candles? I think they are great. They come in all kinds of shapes, sizes and colors. The battery-operated candles are great for decorating inside and out. They do not require electrical or extension cords which can so often create a trip hazard. They will not overload an electrical circuit. A small flameless candle can fit inside a carved pumpkin making it into a scary, but safe jack-o-lantern.

Halloween is a fun holiday. Practicing fire safety and paying attention to personal safety can help ensure that you and your children enjoy the day (and night).

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