HONOLULU (KHON2) — Trick-or-treating is a rite of passage for many keiki. Finding that perfect outfit, collecting as much candy as possible and spending the next couple of days gorging on sweet treats is what makes it so special.
But keeping keiki safe during this festive time is the most important factor is creating fond memories of the season.
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The Honolulu Police Department has worked to create some easy-to-follow tips on how to keep your keiki safe while they are trick-or-treating.
Educating keiki is at the heart of ensuring that they celebrate safely and pass along this wisdom to their own keiki one day.
- One of the most important safety tips for Halloween trick-or-treating is having adult supervision of children at all times, especially when there is vehicle traffic. Not having an adult looking out or monitoring your children may also be a violation of the law.
- Another safety tip for Halloween is making sure that your child’s costume is safe. Costumes should fit right to prevent tripping and heat exhaustion, should allow for clear and unobstructed vision, and be highly visible.
- Parents, along with children, should have flashlights readily available to illuminate walking surfaces at night, as well as to provide a warning to motorist of your location from a greater distance. Having glow type sticks attached to your child’s costume is another way to increase their visibility at night.
- Parents and trick-or-treaters should stick to trick-or-treating in neighborhoods that they are familiar with and stay away from homes with poor lighting to prevent falls and injury. Unfamiliar homes can also be dangerous as there might be dogs on the property which may bite unsuspecting children.
- Once trick-or-treating is done, parents should examine the candy which their child has received to make sure it was not tampered with and is safe to eat. Parents should also stress to their kids to not eat any candy that has not been checked by them while they are trick-or-treating.
For driving travelers
Motorists will have many extra obstacles as keiki are out on neighborhood streets gathering up as much candy as they can carry with them.
Darting in and out of driveways and walking along the sidewalks can pose risks for drivers and trick-or-treaters.
- If you or a friend drink alcohol or consume an intoxicating substance, don’t drive. Have a sober driver or call for a ride.
- Avoid using handheld electronic devices. Using an electronic device while operating a vehicle is a crime and very unsafe.
- If you see a drunk driver or impaired pedestrian on the road, contact 911. It’s best if you provide a license plate description of the vehicle and direction of travel on the road.
- Be on alert for all road users, including pedestrians, at night. Children may come from between vehicles or other unsafe locations.
- it is important to slow down in areas where pedestrians are likely to be or where sight distances are limited. Keep your windshield clean.
For walking pedestrians
Following traffic rules is not only for drivers. Those who are pedestrians have a greater chance of enjoying a safe evening if they know and understand these traffic rules.
- Walk on a sidewalk, if one is available. If there is no sidewalk, then walk facing traffic, as far to the side as safely possible so you can move quickly out of the road if you feel threatened by traffic. Drivers do not expect to see pedestrians in the roadway or to come out from between parked cars or behind shrubbery. Expect that drivers will not see you and wait for them to pass.
- Follow the rules of the road at driveways and intersections. Cross with a traffic signal if there is one, and even if you have the right of way, make sure traffic has stopped or passed before you step into the street. This will be easier to do if electronic devices do not distract you from picking up visual and auditory information about traffic.
- Before the Halloween festivities begin, plan a way to get home safely at the end of the night. Alcohol affects judgment, balance, and reaction time. Create a “buddy system” to get each other home safely. Walking impaired can be just as dangerous as drunk driving.
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So, while you and your keiki are out tricking and treating your neighbors, remember that your safety and the safety of your keiki are of the upmost importance.