In addition to our earlier list of tips for Halloween week preparedness, your neighborhood firefighters ask you to take a moment now - before nightfall - to review this checklist:
BEFORE NIGHTFALL ON HALLOWEEN:
- A good meal prior to parties and trick-or-treating will discourage youngsters from filling up on Halloween treats.
- Consider fire safety when decorating. Do not overload electrical outlets or block doors with holiday lighting or special effects.
- Avoid the use of candles. Battery powered lamps and chemical glow sticks are a much safer alternative.
- Quickly test smoke alarms and identify the location of fire extinguishers.
- Always keep Jack O' Lanterns and hot electric lamps far away from drapes, decorations, flammable items or areas near children and pets.
- Plan and review with children the route and behavior acceptable to you.
- Do not permit children to bicycle, roller-blade or skateboard.
- Agree on a specific time when revelers must return home.
- Along with flashlights for all, older children and escorts should carry a phone.
- Secure, segregate or otherwise prepare household pets for an evening of frightful sights and sounds. Be sure that all dogs and cats are wearing collars and proper identification tags.
- Remind all household drivers to remain cautious and drive slowly.
- Adult partygoers should establish and reward a designated driver.
- A responsible adult should always accompany young children on neighborhood rounds. Do not allow escorts to chat on the phone or use headphones.
- Remind Trick-or-Treaters:
- Use a flashlight and glow sticks, to see and be seen by others.
- Stay in a group, walk slowly and communicate where you are going.
- Only trick-or-treat in well known neighborhoods at homes that have a porch light on.
- Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
- If no sidewalk is available, walk at the farthest edge of the roadway facing traffic.
- Never cut across yards, use alleys or run between parked cars.
- Never enter a stranger's home or car for a treat.
- Obey all traffic and pedestrian regulations.
- Always walk. Never run across a street.
- Only cross the street as a group at intersection crosswalks. Always look left, right and left again to assure safety before proceeding.
- Remove any mask or item that will limit eyesight before crossing a street, driveway or alley.
- Don't assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing Trick-or-Treaters.
- Make eye contact with drivers. Just because one car stops, doesn't mean others will.
- Never consume unwrapped food items or open beverages that may be offered.
- No treats are to be eaten until they are thoroughly checked by an adult at home.
- Law Enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.
- Wait until children are home to sort and check treats. Though tampering is rare, a responsible adult should closely examine all treats and throw away any spoiled, unwrapped or suspicious items.
- Try to apportion treats for the days following Halloween.
- Although sharing is encouraged, make sure items that can cause choking (such as hard candies), are given only to those of an appropriate age.
We hope this checklist and earlier posted tips for pre-Halloween planning help keep your family safe. The Los Angeles Fire Department wishes you a Happy Halloween!
Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department