TALLAHASSEE - As we prepare for the excitement of Halloween, motorists should be ever mindful that children will be out trick-or-treating tomorrow evening. The Florida Highway Patrol would like to provide some helpful tips for parents and drivers to help make Halloween night a safe and enjoyable experience for all.
• Stay alert. Neighborhoods that do not normally have a lot of pedestrian and bicycle traffic may experience an increase on Halloween night.
• Remember that children will be excited and may be trying to visit as many houses as possible within a specific time frame.
• Trick-or-treaters may suddenly dart into traffic from between parked cars.
• Be particularly cautious in areas where cars are parked along the side of the street.
• Watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks in the neighborhood.
• Be patient and SLOW DOWN. Give children lots of time to cross the street. Their costumes may impair their ability to see and hear you, and to get out of your way quickly.
• Remember that children will be excited and may forget to "stop, look and listen" before they cross the street.
• Talk to your child about looking both ways before crossing the street.
• Purchase or make costumes that are light colored and clearly visible to motorists.
• Decorate (and get the kids to help) or trim costumes, goody bags and other containers with reflective tape that will glow in the beam of a car's headlights. Reflective tape can be purchased at bicycle, hardware and sporting goods stores.
• Make sure costumes are short enough so they do not cause children to trip or fall.
• Children should wear well-fitting, sturdy shoes.
• Masks should not impair a child's hearing or field of vision. If necessary, enlarge ear and eye holes or use makeup to create special effects.
• Tie hats and scarves securely to prevent them from slipping over your child's eyes.
We all need to do our part to make this a safe, memorable Halloween for everyone.