Halloween is known not only for being the spookiest night of the year, but also the deadliest for child pedestrians. Children, according to the Safe Kids Coalition, are twice as likely to be struck and killed by a car on Halloween night than on any other night. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 30 people are killed each year on October 31-nearly triple the average number of fatal pedestrian accidents that occur everyday in America. Combine those statistics with the fact that Halloween falls on a Friday this year and add in drunk drivers, and it’s a very scary combination for parents.
The fact is, is that trick-or-treaters can be very hard to see. Halloween is one of the only holidays in which there are hordes of people outside and on the streets during dark hours. Additionally, dark-colored costumes make it particularly difficult for drivers to spot pedestrians at night, especially pint-sized pedestrians, until its too late.
Young children who are excited by the special occasion and buzzed on sugar may be more apt to dart into the road without paying attention to oncoming traffic. With this in mind, both parents and drivers on the road should exercise extra caution and take the necessary steps to prevent a tragic accident from happening.
Tips for Children and Pedestrians:
– Look both ways before crossing roadways, and always walk; don’t run.
– Cross roadways at intersections and crosswalks if they’re available.
– Travel in groups with adult supervision.
– Wear reflective clothing over costumes including reflective vests.
– Wear a glow stick or headlamp.
– Do not enter the cars or homes of strangers, and avoid homes without visible porch lights.
– Make sure children know their home phone number and how to call 911 or their local emergency number in case they have an emergency or become lost.
– Take all treats home for an adult to inspect before eating anything, and never eat unwrapped candy.
Tips for Drivers:
– NEVER drive drunk – Drive slowly, especially in residential neighborhoods – Watch for people and children on the road – Do not text and drive – Avoid making or receiving phone calls – Avoid distractions; adjusting the radio frequently, playing with the GPS, etc.
In addition to traffic accidents, there are a number of dangerous situations that can occur on Halloween night including: costumes not meeting flammability standards or containing toxic or hazardous elements, fire hazards from burning candles, and drunken driving.
At Altman & Altman our team of seasoned attorneys handles a wide range of personal injury cases including traffic accident cases, social host liability, premises liability and products liability. Though we wish you a safe and Happy Halloween, please know that our lawyers are available around the clock should you or a loved one be involved in any type personal injury accident.