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October 31, 2005

Troopers' Tips Make Halloween Not So Scary

West Trenton - With Halloween upon us, the New Jersey State Police are reminding parents and their Halloween goblins about some important safety precautions. While Halloween is fun for our children, it can also be a very dangerous time.

Halloween offers special challenges for parents, drivers and children. Here are some State Police safety tips to help make the 2005 Halloween holiday safe and enjoyable for everyone:


  • Consider using make-up rather than masks. Masks may obstruct a child's vision making it difficult for them to see oncoming traffic.
  • Wear light-colored clothing or add reflective tape to darker costumes. Always carry a flashlight at night. Inexpensive battery-operated strobe lights are now sold in many drug stores and convenience stores.
  • An adult should always accompany small children when they are out trick-or-treating. Older children should travel in groups for their safety.
  • Make sure trick-or-treaters know to only approach familiar houses that have outside lights on and NEVER TO ENTER A STRANGER'S HOUSE OR VEHICLE.
  • The best advice: Trick-or-treat in daylight hours.


  • Stay alert at all times for young children who may dart in front of your vehicle unexpectedly. In the excitement of the day, trick-or-treaters probably won't be paying attention to passing motor vehicles, so slow down and drive cautiously.
  • If you attend a Halloween party where alcohol is served, make sure you have a designated driver for the trip home. Alcohol, even in small amounts, slows reaction time and dulls the senses. With small children running from house to house, driving while under the influence can have a deadly result.
  • If you are transporting trick-or-treaters, remember that seat belt laws are not a burden, but a proven lifesaving measure. Costume or not, buckle up!


  • Consider handing out something other than candy-fast food coupons, pens, sports cards...
  • All opened candy should be thrown out. Make your own trick-or-treaters wait until they return home, and you have examined their goodies, before they sample any treats. It is sad to think people may tamper with food and candy given to children, but better safe than sorry.


Halloween isn't just for kids. Spend quality time with your children by trick-or-treating with them-it's not only safer for them to walk with an adult, but it also can be a lot of fun for you.

The New Jersey State Police believe there is nothing more important than the safety and care of children. Please consider these suggestions and have a safe and happy Halloween.

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