Halloween Road Safety Tips for Drivers and Trick or Treaters
We all know children start to become excited in
the days leading up to Halloween at the prospect of trick-or-treating with
their friends. And on the night itself, they’re often completely hyper at the
thought of bringing home too many teeth-rotting sweets. The last thing on their
minds is road safety,
Sadly, it’s a time when too many accidents
happen involving cars and pedestrians. So it’s up to you as a driver to be extra
vigilant if you have to share the road with diminutive ghosts and zombies. As a
parent, there are also precautions you can take to keep your children safe at
the roadside too…
Safety Tips for Drivers
First, consider whether you have to drive at all this Halloween. But if you are returning late from work or have an urgent errand, here’s our advice:
- Drive slower than the posted speed limit. The slower you travel, the more time you have to react.
- Be aware when passing parked vehicles: this is where it is hardest to spot children running out across the road.
- Look out for groups of children. If you see a bunch of trick-or-treaters, there might be a straggler or two.
- Don’t be distracted - by anything. We all know it’s illegal to use a hand-held mobile phone at the wheel but even a glance at the radio or heating controls could be at the critical moment when a child strays into the road. You need to keep your eyes permanently peeled.
- Be particularly careful at crossings and junctions. Children accompanied by responsible adults will aim to cross where it is safe but not all small children know the Highway Code and may rush across in the excitement.
- Exit and enter driveways with extra caution - there could be small, dark-clothed children crossing the entrance on the footpath.
- Halloween has also tended to be an excuse for an alcoholic drink or three. So even away from residential areas, be wary of older revellers who may be tipsy and stumbling outside pubs or on their way home.
Safety Tips for Parents
As a parent - whether you drive or not - you should think about your child’s safety near roads.
- Consider how visible your child is. There are clever illuminated and luminous outfits which are safer than dark clothes and will allow motorists to see your child. At the very least, carrying a torch will help them be seen.
- Adults should lead by example and not look at mobile phones while walking around. Everyone needs to keep their heads up to spot any dangers.
- If you are accompanying children, choose well-lit areas.
- If the group of children is large, enlist extra grown-ups to escort them.
- Manage any road crossings carefully.
Safety Tips for Children
And of course remember the general safety tips for Halloween to help keep your children safe:
- Young children should be accompanied by a responsible adult
- If your children are older, agree a familiar, well-lit route with them before-hand. And even agree to meet them part way round - we know they don’t always do everything they’re told.
- Agree on a specific time they should return home.
- Teach your children never to enter any stranger's home or car
- Children should stay with their friends. It’s hard to identify strangers, especially in the dark and wearing Halloween masks.
- Suggest treats are eaten when they have returned home.
About the Author
Andrew is a freelance motoring journalist with a background in IT and the vehicle leasing industry. With a lifetime’s passion for all things automotive, he can be found behind the wheel of everything from vans to supercars. In addition to reviewing the latest vehicles and technology, Andrew also runs a couple of classic British motors. He lives at the edge of the Peak District with his son and cat.
Andrew Wright @theMotorWriter