Have a safe, fun Hal­loween

The Star Democrat - - OPINION -

mind­edWith Hal­loweento in­clude safety tonight, in their par­ents prepa­ra­tionsand driv­ers for are a nightreof Most trick- areaor- treat­ing.towns have set trick or treat hours from 6 to 8 Thep. m. Mary­land State High­way Ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fers the­seFor driv­ers:tips: limit.• Stop for pedes­tri­ans, stay alert and obey the speed hours.• Be par­tic­u­larly cau­tious dur­ing peak trick- or- treat­ing

• En­ter and exit drive­ways slowly, and turn at in­ter­sec­tions with cau­tion.

• Be alert for chil­dren dart­ing across the street and cross­ing be­tween parked cars. • When driv­ing chil­dren to and from dif­fer­ent ac­tiv­i­ties,

make sure all seat belts are fas­tened and let chil­dren out of the car on the curb­side. • Never drink and drive. Des­ig­nate a sober driver.

For pedes­tri­ans: • Look left, right, and left again be­fore cross­ing the street. • Cross at cross­walks or in­ter­sec­tions. • Be sure to see and be seen. Avoid dark cloth­ing, wear

bright col­ors and use re­flec­tive de­vices such as vests and blink­ing lights. • Avoid cos­tumes that may im­pair vi­sion. • Stay alert and be on the look­out for cars trav­el­ing

above the speed limit.

The state fire mar­shal’s of­fice pro­vides th­ese Hal­loween fire safety tips: • Pick cos­tumes that are bright and re­flec­tive. Make

sure cos­tumes are short enough to pre­vent trip­ping and en­sure masks don’t block vi­sion.

• Con­sider adding re­flec­tive tape to cos­tumes and trickor- treat con­tain­ers for greater vis­i­bil­ity.

• Pur­chase only cos­tumes, wigs and props la­beled

flame- re­sis­tant or flame- re­tar­dant. When cre­at­ing a cos­tume, choose ma­te­ri­als that will not eas­ily ig­nite if they come in con­tact with heat or flame. • Pro­vide chil­dren with flash­lights to carr y for light­ing

or as part of their cos­tume. • Al­ways su­per vise chil­dren as they go trick- or- treat­ing. • In­struct chil­dren to stay away from open flames or

other heat sources. Be sure chil­dren know how to stop, drop and roll in the event their cloth­ing catches on fire. ( Stop im­me­di­ately, drop to the ground, cov­er­ing your face with your hands, roll over and over to ex­tin­guish the flames).

And the U. S. Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fers th­ese food safety tips for Hal­loween: • Chil­dren shouldn’t snack while they’re out trick- or­treat­ing. Urge your chil­dren to wait un­til they get home and you have had a chance to in­spect the con­tents of their “goody bags.” To help pre­vent chil­dren from snack­ing, give them a light meal or snack be­fore they head out — don’t send them out on an empty stom­ach. • Tell chil­dren not to ac­cept — and es­pe­cially not to eat

— any­thing that isn’t com­mer­cially wrapped. • Par­ents of ver y young chil­dren should re­move any

chok­ing haz­ards such as gum, peanuts, hard can­dies or small toys. • In­spect com­mer­cially wrapped treats for signs of tam­per­ing, such as an un­usual ap­pear­ance or dis­col­oration, tiny pin­holes, or tears in wrap­pers. Throw away any­thing that looks sus­pi­cious.

Par­ents, driv­ers and home­own­ers can help make this a safe Hal­loween for lo­cal trick- or- treaters by fol­low­ing th­ese com­mon- sense sug­ges­tions. Please be alert, drive safely and have fun trick- or- treat­ing.

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