Halloween safety tips

Trick-or-treaters in downtown Edmonds in 2011.
Trick-or-treaters in downtown Edmonds in 2011.

Snohomish County Fire District 1 is encouraging families to keep safety in mind as they get ready to celebrate Halloween. “A little extra caution and a lot of common sense can go a long way toward preventing injuries and fires,” said Kim Schroeder, the district’s Fire and Life Safety Education Specialist.

Below is a list of safety suggestions from Fire District 1:

Stay away from billowing or long, trailing fabric. Costumes should be short enough so that children don’t stumble, get tangled up or brush up against flames (like candles or jack-o-lanterns).

Add reflective tape or striping to costumes for better visibility at dusk and in the dark.
Masks can limit a child’s range of vision. Consider hats or non-toxic makeup instead.

Be sure any costume, wig or accessory you buy is marked “flame resistant.”

Home Safety
Remove garden hoses, planters, lawn decorations and other tripping hazards.

It is safest to use a flashlight or battery-operated flameless candle in a jack-o-lantern. If you use a real candle, use extreme caution. Make sure children are watched at all times around lit candles. Place lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn and far enough out of the way of trick-or-treaters, doorsteps and walkways.

Keep all decorations away from open flame and heat sources such as light bulbs, heaters and fireplaces. Dried flowers and cornstalks are highly flammable. Avoid decorating with lit candles.

A parent or responsible adult should accompany young and elementary-age children.

Stay in a group and plan a route for trick-or-treating.

Only visit homes that have a porch light on.

Stay on well-lit streets and use sidewalks when available.

Bring along flashlights with fresh batteries.

If you are driving your trick-or-treaters, go slowly, use your headlights and use extra caution in residential neighborhoods.

Remind children to wait until they are home to sort, check and eat treats. Throw away any unwrapped or suspicious items.

Fire District 1 is the largest provider of fire and emergency medical services in Snohomish County, with full-time staffing at 12 fire stations. The department serves nearly 200,000 residents in unincorporated Mountlake Terrace, Brier, Edmonds, Woodway and south Snohomish County.

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