*This post was updated 10/26/2020.
Fall nights are in full swing and Halloween is just around the corner! If you plan to hand out goodies this year, be sure that you prep your home to ensure safety for tiny ghosts and goblins who will soon be knocking on your door.
Even if you aren’t handing out candy, these safety precautions will ensure the safety of any wayward child who might pass through your yard on their way to the next stop:
1. Keep Safety In Mind
Amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, it's important to follow your state/local guidelines for trick-or-treating. If your local is allowing trick-or-treating festivities, be sure safety is at the top of your to-do list.
Consider individually wrapped goodie bags that children can grab from your driveway, allowing them to stay socially distanced. Or, create a mechanism using a PVC pipe to distribute candy to children while maintaining a safe distance. Before handing out any sort of treats, ensure you wash your hands with soap and water before and after.
2. Clear Traffic Areas of Debris
Scan your sidewalks and entryway for any debris that can cause injury to a young child or accompanying adult. Things like wet leaves, tangled roots or small dislodged branches could pose a slip or fall accident.
Be prepared for some pedestrians to cut across your lawn in search of candy. Don’t overlook the hazards you may have in your yard as well, like holes and extension cords that could result in a twisted ankle.
3. Keep Outdoors Well-Lit
It might be tempting to keep the path to your doorway and entrance dark and spooky, but this can create real hazards for trick-or-treaters. If your walkway is too dark, you run the risk of trick-or-treaters experiencing unexpected injuries due to poor visibility.
Not only will a well-lit property decrease the chances of an injury, criminal activity and teenage hijinks will likely be subdued with no darkness to hide in.
4. Keep Pets Indoors
No matter how well behaved your furry friend might be, Halloween can create anxiety for any pet. Strange masks and costumes, a plethora of visiting strangers, noise and decorations – all of these elements can turn into trouble quickly for a stressed-out animal who feels threatened.
Prevent an accidental injury and traumatizing event for your pet by simply keeping your animals away from the action inside of your home or fenced in yard. Remember that it isn’t always your pet that poses a threat, there are superstitious people out on Halloween-night that might cause harm to your animals as well.
Overall, it’s best to simply keep your animals inside on Halloween to ensure that everyone - including your furry family members - stays safe.
5. Remember Fire Safety
It’s easy to go overboard with your spooky Halloween decorations, but do your best to remember fire safety. Jack-o’-lanterns, candelabras and other sources of open flames might set the mood, but it can also set fire to your home if knocked over by a stray magical wand or dinosaur tail.
Try using battery operated lights instead! There are flameless lighting options that look just like a real candle but keep your front door safe from open flames.
Also remember to keep all exits and entrances of your home unobstructed. Your fire escape route won’t be as seamless if your exits are covered with dozens of fake spiderwebs and a replica of the haunted horseman!
Halloween should be full of smiles for neighborhood children; and by taking a few precautions you can ensure a safe and fun evening for everyone involved!