While Halloween is meant to be a fun time for kids of all ages, it can, unfortunately, be dangerous. The Division of Consumer Protection urges consumers to follow these simple safety tips to be sure this Halloween is a safe one:
Choking and Ingestion Hazards
- Avoid costumes or accessories that go into kids’ mouths. These items may be hazardous, or may contain excessive levels of lead that may be dangerous to their health.
- Do not allow young children to have any items that are small enough to present a choking hazard or that have small parts or components that could separate during use.
- Warn children not to eat any treats until an adult has had a chance to examine them carefully. Adults, look through your child’s bag or bucket of candy BEFORE they eat any of it to be sure that it is safe and that there are no ingredients in candy to which your child may have an allergy.
Trip and Other Injury Hazards
- Avoid masks that fully cover the face as well as costumes made with flimsy materials and outfits with big, baggy sleeves or billowing skirts. Costumes should fit well and not drag on the ground to guard against trips and falls.
- If children must wear a mask, make sure it fits securely, provides adequate ventilation, and has eye holes large enough to allow full vision. Also, tie hats and scarves securely to prevent them from slipping over children's eyes and obstructing vision.
- Remove obstacles from lawns, steps and porches when expecting trick-or-treaters.
- Buy flame-resistant costumes, masks, beards and wigs and minimize the risk of contact with candles and other fire sources.
- Keep candles and Jack O'Lanterns away from precarious places in your home, and don’t place them near fabric.
- Don't overload extension cords.
Optimize Visibility and Stay in Areas You Know
- Purchase or make costumes that are white or light colored, bright and clearly visible to motorists. For greater visibility make sure that costumes have reflective tape that will glow in the beam of a car's headlights.
- Trick-or-Treat close to home or in a safe place such as a mall. Young children should always Trick-or-Treat with an adult or older responsible child.
- Children should carry flashlights to see and be seen.
- Only approach homes where the lights are on.
- Keep your home well-lit.
The Division of Consumer Protection wishes New Yorkers a Safe and Happy Halloween!