Halloween is a fun and exciting holiday, but as a result of increased foot traffic, the potential for vehicle related accidents with young pedestrians is significantly greater. Minimise the risk of accidents on the road by following our Halloween traffic safety tips for 2014 below.
Drive slowly through residential areas
Children can be unpredictable at the best of times, let alone when they are excited on a night like Halloween. If you happen to be driving through residential neighbourhoods on Halloween, make sure you drive extra slowly and be especially alert.
Take extra time to look out for children
When you are driving around on Halloween, make sure you put extra time and effort into looking out for children who may be standing at crossings, junctions and on curbs. Kids can dart out onto the road at any time. They are likely to be caught up in the excitement of trick or treating and will be less aware of cars, so make sure you are watchful of their presence.
Signal for children to cross the road
Even if you have spent time showing your children how to cross the road properly, be mindful that not all parents will have done the same. Sometimes kids panic when it comes to crossing the roads and their actions can be erratic and dangerous. If you see children waiting to cross the road you are driving on, slow down, stop and providing there are not any cars coming the other way, signal for them to cross in front.
Enter and exit driveways slowly
Children are likely to be visiting houses in their local neighbourhood trick or treating, so make sure if you are pulling in or out of a driveway, you do it slowly and with great care.
Eliminate distractions inside your car
As we mentioned before, you will need to be especially alert on Halloween as children can be unpredictable, particularly when they are excited. The best way to keep yourself alert is to minimise any distractions inside your car. Turn the radio off and disable your Bluetooth headset whilst you are driving around residential areas. This will allow you to fully concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
Don’t overtake cars that have stopped in the road
Remember that parents are likely to be dropping off and picking up their children, so if there is a car stopped in the road, refrain from overtaking it. Children could dart out onto the road to get in the car or exit the car without looking, so you need to be on high alert.
If you are dropping off your children, choose a safe spot to stop and make sure you alert other motorists by signalling and putting on your hazard lights.
Take extra precautions on the road
Anticipate that there is likely to be more pedestrian traffic on Halloween. You may want to consider driving slower than usual and turning on your headlights earlier in the day so you can spot children more easily. Children tend to go trick or treating between 5:00pm and 8:00pm so be especially careful when driving on the road during those hours.
Keeping your trick or treaters safe
If your children are planning on going out trick or treating on Halloween, make sure that you spend time going through tips on how to keep safe on the road. Do not let your children out unsupervised if they do not know how to cross a road safely. We also recommend putting reflective tape on your child’s costume to make them more visible to drivers. Whilst equipping them with a flashlight will help them see where they are walking, make sure you tell them not to shine it at drivers, as this could distract them and cause them to temporarily lose control of their vehicles.
Follow our Halloween safety tips and help to keep both drivers and pedestrians safe. We hope you have a happy holiday!
Image credits: U.S. Army Garrison Japan and sean dreillinger