Defeat the Top 5 Halloween Hazards

 During the Halloween season, fatalities and injuries have the tendency to increase.1  With more than 36 million children out trick-or-treating, here are some addditional resources to help keep kids out of the emergency room.

Hazard #1  Pedestrian-Car Collisions: Child pedestrians are four times more likely to be killed on Halloween than on any other evening of the year. Parents need to accompany children, make sure they are visible, and model safe pedestrian behaviors themselves.

Hazard #2  Non-Intersection Crossings:  Well over half of the Halloween pedestrian fatalities involving children occur at non-intersections, suggesting that mid-block crossings, darting out from between parked cars and other unexpected crossing behaviors may have contributed to their deaths. 3

Hazard #3  Drunk Driving:  Drunk driving over Halloween has surpassed drunk driving on New Year's. On Halloween night in 2008, 58% of all highway fatalities involving a driver or a motorcycle rider were alcohol-related. 4

Hazard #4  Falls:  Falls are one of the leading causes of injury on Halloween night. While it is important to make sure costumes are "fall-proof," it is also important to clear walkways, yards and driveways of tripping hazards in advance and to carry a flashlight.

Hazard #5 Burns and Eye Injuries:  Medical professionals cite an increase in eye and burn-related injuries on Halloween night. Paying attention to children's costumes, using face paint instead of masks and using "soft" toy weapons can help reduce these risks.

1. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
2. CDC Wonder, "Childhood Pedestrian Deaths During Halloween -- United States, 1975-1996, MMWR 46(42); 987-990 (7/24/1997)
3. National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as quoted by the Independent-Mail, 10/27/2008, www.independentmail.com/news/2008/oct/27/officials-halloween
4. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration