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Safety's no trick

October 31, 2012
By TIFFANY REPECKI (trepecki@breezenewspapers.com) , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

As local children swarm the streets tonight to beg for candy from their neighbors, authorities are offering some tips to keep everyone safe.

"Visibility, number one," Dave Webster, a public education specialist at the Cape Coral Fire Department, said Tuesday. "The kids have to be visible."

Children can use flashlights and glowsticks, and parents can incorporate reflective tape or items into a child's costume to increase visibility. Wearing a light-colored costume or clothing to start with also accomplishes this.

"Anything to make them seen is certainly a big advantage," he said.

Whether homemade or store bought, costumes should be made of non-flammable materials. Steer clear of billowing and long trailing fabric that can catch fire, and children should be able to see clearly out of their masks.

"If it impairs their vision, then they're not going to see the danger before it comes to them," Webster said.

Fact Box

Safety tips for motorists

- Exercise extra vigilance for

trick-or-treaters, especially

small children.

- If you are wearing a costume,

make sure it does not impede

your ability to operate your

vehicle in a safe manner.

- If you plan to consume alcohol,

be responsible. Do not drink and

drive.

- To report the location of an

impaired driver in Lee County,

dial 911.

Source: Lee County Sheriff's Office

Safety tips for trick-or-treaters

- Aim for visibility with a

light-colored costume or clothing,

or incorporate reflective items or

tape into a costume. Use

flashlights or glowsticks.

- Make sure costumes are made

of non-flammable materials, and

steer clear of billowing and long

trailing fabric.

- Children should see clearly out

of masks, or try makeup instead.

- Young children should be

chaperoned by an adult. Trick-or-

treat in groups and stick to

known neighborhoods.

- Never go inside a stranger's

home, and avoid dark or poorly

lit ones.

- Check a child's planned route

against the Florida Department

of Law Enforcement's Sexual

Offender and Predator database.

- Stay on the sidewalk. If there are

no sidewalks available, walk

along the curb and face traffic,

so motorists can see you

coming.

- Parents should screen all candy

and treats.

- Do not accept or eat anything not

commercially wrapped.

- For young children, remove

choking hazards such as gum,

peanuts, hard candy and small

toys.

Source: Cape Coral Fire Department and Lee County Sheriff's Office

Makeup may be a better option than a mask.

Costumes should also fit correctly to prevent trips and falls.

"Obviously, younger children should be chaperoned by an adult," he said, adding that anyone who goes out tonight should be part of a group.

"Nobody should be trick or treating alone," Webster said.

Trick-or-treaters should stick to the neighborhoods they know.

"Don't go to people's homes if you don't know who they are," he said.

When out walking, stay on the sidewalk. If there are no sidewalks available, walk along the curb and face traffic, so motorists can see you coming.

 
 
 

 

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