For Immediate Release:
October 30, 2015
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THE NEW YORK DEPARTMENT OF STATE’S DIVISION OF CONSUMER PROTECTION
OFFERS SAFETY TIPS FOR HALLOWEEN
The New York Department of State’s Division of Consumer Protection today advised parents and guardians to take extra safety precautions this Halloween, especially when choosing costumes and accessories for trick-or-treaters. While Halloween is meant to be a festive occasion, it is important to be aware of potential hazards so as to avoid injuries and unpleasant situations.
The Division of Consumer Protection urges consumers to follow these simple safety tips to be sure this Halloween is a safe and happy one:
- Make sure to purchase flame-resistant costumes, including masks, beards and wigs.
- Avoid costume themes that require accessories such as candles, sparklers, lanterns or 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 when decorating at home.
Choking and Ingestion Hazards
- Avoid costumes or accessories that may come in contact with kids’ mouths. These items may be hazardous, or may contain chemicals that could be dangerous to their health.
- Avoid costumes with small parts attached or components that could separate during use since they can present a choking hazard to small children.
- Warn children not to eat any treats until an adult has had a chance to examine them carefully. Inspect your child’s bag or bucket 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 wear masks, make sure they fit securely, provide adequate ventilation, and have 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 their vision.
- Remove obstacles from lawns, steps and porches when expecting trick-or-treaters.
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.
- Advise children to 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!
For more information or to file a complaint against a business or an individual, visit the New York Department of State’s Division of Consumer Protection at http://www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection/ or by contacting the Division’s hotline at (800) 697-1220. The Consumer Assistance Hotline is open Monday to Friday, excluding Federal Holidays, 8:30am to 4:30pm.
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