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Fill-in-the-Blank News Release for County Health Departments

Halloween Safety Tips
  
For Release: October ___, 2001

Contact: (County Administrator’s Name)
        (Telephone number)

Take the Danger Out of “Trick or Treat”  

Halloween is coming, and kids are thinking about their costumes and the piles of candy coming their way. However, they aren’t thinking about the many dangers they might face during the rush to play games and get treats. The _____ County Health Department offers these suggestions on ways to stay safe during Halloween.

  • Children under age 10 should not go trick-or-treating without the supervision of an adult or older sibling. (Attach the name, address and phone number of children to their clothes.)
  • Instruct children to travel in familiar areas along pre-established routes, and to return home at a specific time.
  • Instruct children never to enter a home or apartment building without an adult.
  • Restrict children's trick-or-treating visits to homes with porch or outside lights illuminated, and ideally, to homes where you know the residents.
  • Remove breakable items or obstacles such as tools, ladders and children's toys from your steps, lawn and porch.
  • Tell children to bring their treats home before eating them. Parents should check treats to ensure that items have not been tampered with and are safely sealed.
  • Keep costumes safe to avoid children tripping and falling over loose costumes. Buy only "flame-resistant" costumes, masks, beards and wigs and only use shoes that fit.
  • Apply face paint or cosmetics directly to the face.  It is safer than a loose-fitting mask that can obstruct a child's vision.  (If a mask is worn, be certain the mask fits securely, and cut eyeholes large enough for full vision to see cars, steps and other obstacles outdoors.)
  • Give trick-or-treaters flashlights.
  • Teach children to stay on the sidewalk when possible and not to dart between parked or oncoming cars.
  • Decorate costumes, bags and sacks with reflective tape and use light or bright costumes for more visibility at night.
  • Look left, right and left again before crossing the street and cross at intersections or crosswalks.
  • Exit and enter the car on the curbside, away from traffic.
  • Motorists can help make Halloween safe for children by remembering to slow down in residential neighborhoods, obeying all traffic signs, watching for children in or near the street, and carefully entering or exiting driveways.

“People should consider offering healthy treat alternatives such as toys or stickers instead of candy. Other safe alternatives to neighborhood trick-or-treating include visiting shopping malls, churches, and community-sponsored festivals,” said __________ County Administrator _______________.

(OPTIONAL): Some local organizations that will be checking candy and other treats to make sure they have not been tampered with include:

 

 

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