New Haven Police Offer Halloween Safety Tips

- FILE - Trick-or-Treaters out on Halloween (Image: Shutterstock)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Halloween should be a fun night for your little ghosts and goblins. Trick or Treating is a time honored tradition for families taking to the neighborhood streets, knocking on doors and waiting and giving out something sweet to eat. But safety should always be on everyone’s minds. The New Haven Police Department has some tips to make sure the night remains one of enjoyment and celebration.

Walk Safely:

* Cross the street at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.

* Look left, right and left again when crossing and keep looking as you cross.

* Put electronic devices down and keep heads up and walk, don’t run, across the street.

* Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.

* Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible. Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.

* Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.

Trick or Treat With an Adult:

* Children under the age of 16 should not be alone at night without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, they should stick to familiar areas that are well lit and trick-or-treat in groups.

Keep Costumes both Creative and Safe:

* Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.

* Choose face paint and makeup whenever possible instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.

* Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.

* When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls.

* In light of recent social-media “CLOWN” concerns – we recommend an alternative costume.

Drive With Extra Precaution on Halloween

* Slow down and be especially alert in residential neighborhoods. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways.

* Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs.

* Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.

* Eliminate any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings.

* Drive slowly, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distances.

* Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. so be especially alert for kids during those hours.

Who’s at your door:

* Although many adults dress in costumes and participate in Halloween, Trick or Treating IS A CHILDREN’S ACTIVITY.

* You may open your door for anyone you wish BUT if you are suspicious of people at your door (especially older teenagers, adults without children and those without costumes or just masks), don’t open it.

* Make sure you have a clear view of who is outside. Keep porch lights on.

* If you don’t want to entertain Trick or Treaters, post a note covering your door bell.

The New Haven Police Department will have additional patrols assigned in residential neighborhoods during the Trick or Treating hours. The patrols will consist of both Uniformed Officers and Plain-clothed Officers and Detectives. The New Haven Police Department phone number is 203-946-6316.

So dress up, trick or treat, and have a fun and safe Halloween.

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