Driving on Halloween? Stay Safe -
Halloween can and should be lots of fun.
But did you know that a child is four times more likely to be involved in a fatal pedestrian accident on Halloween than on any other night of the year? With cars driving through unfamiliar neighborhoods and hundreds of distracted children running amok it’s difficult to drive safely this day of the year. And forget the consequences of getting a traffic ticket; if you’re involved in an accident on Halloween you could actually take the life of an innocent child.
Whether you’ve got to get home from work, take your family to a party, or ferry your kids to-and-from walkable neighborhoods, driving safely on Halloween means keeping the following things in mind.
Maybe you know a certain shortcut that helps you beat rush hour traffic or perhaps you just don’t want to wait at the light. On Halloween it’s best to stay on major thoroughfares and avoid driving through neighborhood or heavily-pedestrian areas at all costs, even if that means adding a little extra time to your drive.
Use Your Lights
As early as twilight, turn your headlights on. They’ll make your vehicle easier to see from a long distance away and help you spot children earlier, too. And if you ever have to take a blind turn or make it down a hill with poor visibility don’t be afraid to use your horn to signal your vehicle.
On Halloween kids are hopped up on sugar, excited to see their friends, and they’re simply not thinking about pedestrian safety. Children don’t have fully-developed peripheral vision and they don’t have any concept of their own visibility. Watch for them darting out between parked cars, crossing in the middle of the street, or even crossing at a crosswalk without stopping to look first.
Teen Driver? Stay Home
Teen drivers have a far higher accident rate than adult drivers so it’s best they avoid the high risks posed on Halloween night. Particularly once several teens are piled into a vehicle, the risk of a fatal accident rises significantly. If you’re the parent of a teen driver do the chauffeuring yourself on Halloween.
Above all else, slow down! Slow way, way down. Remember that speed limits are designed for the best circumstances – not a dark night when children are apt to jump out in front of the car. If it says 50, go 40…if a neighborhood sign says 30mph limit you should keep your speed to no more than 10mph. Having the ability to stop on a dime is critical to avoiding Halloween accidents and slow speed is the key.
Halloween is one of the best nights of the year for kids! It’s the perfect time to have fun, run wild, and generally just be a kid…but that means adults have to take extra responsibility on October 31st for everyone’s children’s safety. If you’re driving on Halloween, please use caution.