The Scariest Part of Halloween May Be Pedestrian Accidents
Halloween is a time of spooky fun for the whole family. Unfortunately, it can also be the most dangerous time of the year for kids. The National Safety Council reports that children are twice as likely to be killed in a car accident on Halloween than on any other day of the year. And according to the Los Angeles Times, this rate of pedestrian accidents can increase dramatically for younger children.
A study of Halloween accidents between 1975 and 2016 found that children between the ages of 4 and 8 years were ten times more likely to be killed by a car accident on Halloween than on average days. Children between the ages of 9 and 12 were about seven times more likely to be killed on Halloween, and for teens aged 13 to 17, the risk was about double.
Deldar Legal wants to help you and your family stay safe this Halloween. Read our tips to prepare for a safe and happy October 31. If you or a loved one is involved in an auto accident at any time of the year, call our office at (844) 335-3271 to schedule your free consultation. Our experienced Los Angeles auto accident lawyers have helped many California injury victims protect their legal rights.
How to Keep Kids Safe on Halloween
There are many different risks children face on the streets on Halloween. By learning about these dangers, parents will be better able to prevent accidents. Here are some important tips for reducing the risk of Halloween injuries:
Make sure your child can see and be seen
Costumes can interfere with a child’s vision. This is especially true when a costume has a mask, face makeup, or other headpieces. Be sure your child’s costume does not interfere with his or her ability to see traffic. It is also important to be sure that your child can be seen by traffic. Add fluorescent paint or tape to costumes when possible. Use light-colored clothing. Give your child glow sticks, flashlights, and other light sources to bring out trick-or-treating.
Teach and enforce road safety rules.
Unlike adults, children do not have years of experience in the rules of the road. They cannot understand traffic patterns or predict movements the way an experienced driver can. This is why it is so important for adults to teach children road safety rules. Start with the basics, such as always looking both ways before crossing the street, and only crossing at designated crosswalks.
Children should be taught to make eye contact with drivers to be sure they are seen. Most importantly, children must learn not to make sudden movements. The natural impulsivity of childhood is often heightened by the excitement of Halloween and the prospect of candy. Unfortunately, this impulsivity can make children run out into the road and make other unexpected movements. Help children to stay calm while they are out in the streets.
Be careful when you are driving.
Of course, adults must also be very careful when driving on Halloween night. Slow down. Keep an extra careful watch for children, and leave plenty of room in the road in case someone darts out unexpectedly. Keep your phone out of reach, so you are not tempted to text and drive. Program your navigation system before leaving, so that you will not have to use your phone while driving. Distracted driving can be even more deadly in the confusion of Halloween.
If you are driving with children, be sure that they follow road safety rules, as well. They should not be allowed to distract the driver with noise or movement. Be especially careful when you get to your destination: excited children are likely to throw open their doors and run into the street without looking. Children should be taught to carefully look for other cars, pedestrians, or bicyclists in the road before carefully opening their doors and exiting the vehicle.
Choose your route carefully.
Many parents carefully choose trick-or-treating routes for their children. In addition to considering the safety of the neighborhood, you must also consider the safety of nearby roads. Busy streets and major thoroughfares are highly dangerous for pedestrians. Stay off of the main roads. High-density apartment and condo complexes often have more houses in a smaller area with less traffic. This can be safer than homes along a busy road. Your children may also be pleased to discover they can visit more homes in a shorter time frame!
Be especially careful with younger children.
As we have seen, the risk of auto accidents on Halloween is greatest for younger children. Safe Kids Worldwide recommends that parents accompany children under the age of twelve when they go out trick-or-treating. When you are out, keep a close eye on your little ones. Stop dangerous behaviors before they lead to danger. If your child is getting overly excited and not paying attention to traffic, take him or her someplace quiet to calm down. Insist on holding hands if necessary. Use a wagon, stroller, or bike with handles to keep your child within reach.
Older children might be able to trick-or-treat without an adult present safely, but they still must follow traffic rules. Make sure your child knows and understands your expectations for traffic safety. Track his or her route with a smartphone. Be sure that your child’s friends will not encourage unsafe behavior or horseplay while they are out in the streets. Make sure your child always has an option to get picked up immediately and make it home safely.
Call Us Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a Los Angeles Pedestrian Accident Attorney
Injury victims have the legal right to be fully and fairly compensated for all the losses they suffer as the result of a driver’s negligence. Don’t leave your child’s legal rights to chance – call Deldar Legal at (844) 335-3271 or contact us online. With an experienced Los Angeles pedestrian accident attorney in your corner, you will be able to fight back against lowball settlement offers and other insurance company tactics. Call today to schedule your free consultation.
Posted in: Pedestrian Accidents