Sheriff's Column — Have a safe Halloween

Sheriff Steve Lawson
Posted 10/25/18

Have a Safe Halloween

Bradley County Sheriff Steve Lawson

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Sheriff's Column — Have a safe Halloween

Posted

Fall weather has descended upon us, with cooling temperatures, and shorter days. We are in the thick of Fall Festival Season and approaching Halloween this week. This season presents unique safety challenges that aren’t necessarily present during other times of the year, namely for our children. Halloween and Fall Festival season is an exciting time of year for kids, and to help them have a safe holiday, I would like to share some information that will help keep you and your family safe.

I have adapted this list from suggested tips provided by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

• Plan costumes that are bright and reflective. Make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, entanglement or contact with flame.
• When shopping for costumes, wigs and accessories, look for and purchase those with a label clearly indicating they are flame resistant.
• If a sword, cane, or stick is a part of your child's costume, make sure it is not sharp or long. A child may be easily hurt by these accessories if he stumbles or trips.
• Do not use decorative contact lenses. While the packaging on decorative lenses will often make claims such as "one size fits all," or "no need to see an eye specialist," using decorative contact lenses without a prescription is both dangerous and illegal. This can cause pain, inflammation, and serious eye disorders and infections, which may lead to permanent vision loss.
• Review with children how to call 9-1-1 (or their local emergency number) if they ever have an emergency or become lost.
• Small children should never carve pumpkins. Children can draw a face with markers. Then parents can do the cutting.
• Consider using a flashlight or glow stick instead of a candle to light your pumpkin. If you do use a candle, a votive candle is safest.
• To keep homes safe for visiting trick-or-treaters, parents should remove from the porch and front yard anything a child could trip over such as garden hoses, toys, bikes and lawn decorations.
• Parents should check outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs.
• Wet leaves or snow should be swept from sidewalks and steps.
• Restrain pets so they do not inadvertently jump on or bite a trick-or-treater or run away.
A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
Have flashlights with fresh batteries for all children and their escorts.
If your older children are going alone, plan and review the route that is acceptable to you. Agree on a specific time when they should return home.
Only go to homes with a porch light on and never enter a home or car for a treat.
Because pedestrian injuries are the most common injuries to children on Halloween, safety should be followed
Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity
As you and your family enjoy the season, I hope you will take proper precautions to stay safe. This can be an exciting time of year for all ages. Rest assured that we at the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office will be doing our part to keep you safe as well.

Happy fall ya’ll!

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