As Halloween approaches, it is time to get ready for candy and costume parties. It is a fun night, and most of the scares are harmless fun. However, there is one danger you should watch out for as a pedestrian on Halloween: car accidents. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that Halloween is a deadly holiday for motorists and pedestrians.
In fact, 38 percent of deaths on Halloween in 2011 involved drunk drivers. If you are going to a party, be careful while walking around. If you are taking kids trick-or-treating, look out for their safety. Follow these three tips to stay safe on this spooky night.
1. Walk in safe places
Only walk on sidewalks when possible. When crossing busy streets, always use a crosswalk if there is one. If you are crossing a residential street, try to cross at an intersection where there are stop signs for drivers. Also, make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them. Supervise children and ensure they walk safely.
2. Make yourself visible
If you walk around after sunset, make sure motorists can notice you; pedestrians are more difficult to see at night. Wearing a bright costume or carrying glow sticks can help. Even using a flashlight can increase your visibility for drivers.
3. Stay alert
It is not a good idea to wear masks or let your kids wear masks, especially when it is dark outside. This limits peripheral vision, making it easy to miss a car when crossing the street. If you have kids, consider painting their faces instead so they can see as much as possible.
Follow these tips from the NHTSA to make sure you can celebrate Halloween without getting into a severe accident. While some “frightening” situations are normal on Halloween, an accident should never be one you have to experience.