Halloween 2023: Organizations offer tips, advice to keep celebrations safe

Halloween is right around the corner and public safety organizations are reminding everyone to keep safety in mind while out celebrating and trick-or-treating.

The National Fire Protection Association, Travis County Emergency Services, Buda Police Department, and Lago Vista Police Department have offered the following tips and advice.

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Food Safety

  • Wait until children are home to sort and check treats before eating anything; when in doubt, throw it out
  • Check for and remove choking hazards and allergens, such as gum, peanuts, hard candies and small toys
  • Do not eat homemade treats unless they're from trusted friends or family members
  • If using hand sanitizer, make sure your hands are dry before eating
  • Do not buy fun-packaged hand sanitizers, as they can be mistaken for food and accidentally consumed

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Costume Safety

  • Use non-toxic face paint and make-up
  • If decorating your mask, use non-toxic art supplies
  • Make sure mask eyeholes are large enough to see out of 
  • When choosing a costume, stay away from long trailing fabric and make sure it fits well to avoid tripping hazards

Trick-or-Treating Safety

  • Provide children with flashlights or glow sticks to carry for lighting
  • Wear reflective patches or tape on costumes for visibility
  • Do not chew on or break open glow sticks 
  • Don't let children enter strangers' homes or cars
  • Use a buddy system and stay in well-lit areas
  • Remind your kids how to call 9-1-1 in an emergency
  • Watch for cars and stick to walking on sidewalks and paths and using designated crosswalks

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Decoration Safety

  • Handle dry ice properly as skin exposure or ingestion can cause severe burns
  • Keep room ventilated when using dry ice
  • Keep exits clear of decorations so nothing blocks escape routes

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Fire Safety

  • Make sure all smoke alarms in the home are working
  • Tell children to stay away from open flames, including jack-o-lanterns with candles in them
  • Use battery operated candles or glow sticks in jack-o-lanterns
  • Keep all decorations away from open flames and heat sources like light bulbs and heaters