With children across Manitoba preparing their Halloween costumes and candy bags for trick-or-treating tonight, police and paramedics in Winnipeg want everyone to be safe.
The Winnipeg Police Service and the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service have issued some tips for everyone — big and small — to ensure Halloween is a safe and fun occasion:
1. Be visible.
Children should try to go trick-or-treating when it's still light outside, and they should pick well-lit streets.
Trick-or-treaters should wear bright, reflective costumes, or have reflective tape on their outfits. As well, they should carry a flashlight and glow sticks.
Children should be accompanied by an adult while doing door to door, or they should go as a group.
Trick-or-treaters should stay on sidewalks and look left, right and left again to make sure no cars are approaching them before crossing the street.
As well, children should always cross the street at corners and crosswalks, and never cross between parked cars or in the middle of the block.
On streets where there is no sidewalk, trick-or-treaters should face traffic while they walk on the side of the road.
Adults who are driving around on Halloween night should slow down and look out for children walking around.
Those who are handing out candy should make sure their houses are well lit, their yards are clear, and their pets are secured.
2. Be fire smart.
Parents are encouraged to make sure their children stay away from open flames, like candles inside jack-o-lanterns.
Trick-or-treaters should also know how to stop, drop and roll if their clothes catch on fire.
Homeowners should consider using a flashlight or battery-operated candle inside a jack-o-lantern instead of a real candle.
As well, homeowners should keep any flammable decorations, like dried flowers, crepe paper and corn stalks, away from any open flames and heat sources.
3. Wear safe costumes.
Masks can shift and obscure people's vision, so trick-or-treaters should consider wearing makeup instead.
As for the rest of the costume, the clothing should fit well and not be too long or baggy in order to prevent falls.
4. Never go inside strangers' homes.
Parents should make sure their children know they should never enter a stranger's house.
Parents are also urged to plan out a trick-or-treating route with their children and set a time for when they should be heading home.
5. Only eat treats after they have been examined.
Children should only be allowed to eat their Halloween candy after it's been inspected by an adult who can remove any potential hazards.
As well, parents should make sure their children are not eating candy while playing, running, jumping around or talking, as that raises the risk of choking.