With Halloween quickly approaching, children are getting excited about what they are going to wear and how much candy they will eat. This time of year also means that more children will be out and about. That means drivers need to take extra precautions to make sure children and their parents remain safe while trick-or-treating.
To make sure you and your family have a safe Halloween experience, you should review some important safety tips. If you have teenagers going out, it would be good to share these tips with them as well.
Drivers may find traveling on Halloween difficult, especially if they are not taking part in the festivities. Even if you are on your commute home, you may find the extra traffic overwhelming. Remain calm because you need to stay focused to avoid a car accident.
Do Not Drink and Drive
Drunk driving is illegal, and it can have catastrophic consequences. Your ability to react quickly if a costumed child darts out in front of you will be severely diminished, even after just one alcoholic beverage. It is simply not worth it to risk a child’s life. Get home before you have a drink, or take a cab if you have been drinking.
Be Extra Vigilant
Children might dash out in front of your car on Halloween night. Make sure your focus is entirely on driving. It is also wise to drive more slowly, especially in and around neighborhoods where children are trick-or-treating. Usually neighborhoods have posted hours for Halloween events in the 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. window. Unfortunately, the start of this coincides with rush hour traffic, so if you are in a hurry to get home from work, remember that you need to take your time.
Another crucial tip is to put your cellphone away. When you are distracted, you are not able to focus all of your attention on driving your car. Avoiding distracted driving is essential.
Additionally, even if you have the right-of-way, yield to pedestrians crossing the street. Children will dash out without looking, so driving slowly will allow you to have more time to stop before getting into an accident. Where you see one child crossing the street, you will likely see more.
Seat Belts Must be Buckled
Many parents drive their children around in their cars for Halloween. If you plan to drive on Halloween, make sure your child is buckled securely or in their car seat. Your child might fight this, but doing so will ensure that your child is safe.
You may also try to avoid removing your child’s costume to buckle them up. Some costumes have obstructions that make putting on a seat belt challenging or impossible. Do not avoid buckling in your child. Instead, remove that part of the costume. This might be bothersome, but it will keep your child safe.
What Should I Do if I Plan on Trick-or-Treating?
Just like drivers need to pay attention, so do trick-or-treaters. Whether you are going out with your child or you are sending your child out with friends, make sure they take proper precautions.
Do not let your child go out trick-or-treating alone or with friends if they are too young. In groups, children can be influenced to horseplay, such as running out into the street. If you are there, you can protect them and keep them safe.
Wear Light-Colored Clothing
Both you and your child should wear at least some piece of reflective or light-colored clothing. This can help make you more visible to cars driving by and keep your child safe.
Remind Your Child to Walk
Children are extremely excited to get as much candy as they can on Halloween. They will want to run between houses in the neighborhood, but running can create problems. Not only could your child trip and fall, but they could also dart out into the street, not realizing a car is coming.
Remind Children to Look Both Ways
It is also important to make sure you constantly remind your child to look both ways before crossing the street. While drivers should take extra care on Halloween, that does not mean your child can forego the normal rules of crossing the road. Help keep them safe by walking with them and ensuring they take their time to safely cross the street.
Besides wearing light-colored clothing, you should also carry a flashlight. Especially if you are going to be out after dark, a flashlight can help you illuminate the sidewalk and avoid any dangers. A flashlight can also make you more visible to drivers. After sunset is the most dangerous time on Halloween, so taking whatever precautions you can to help increase safety is important.
The earlier you start trick-or-treating, the earlier you can finish. If you can finish at dusk, that is the best time to head home. This will help keep you and your child safe.
What Should I Do After a Halloween Car Accident?
Even if you take every precaution, whether you are driving or walking on Halloween night, you cannot control everyone else’s behavior. Even though you may have done everything right, you might still find yourself involved in a car accident, but it is important not to panic.
After a car accident on Halloween, make sure you and your children are okay, then call 911 as soon as possible. Even if you were involved in a minor accident, calling 911 will create a record of the accident. An official accident report can be useful if the other driver tries to say that you were at fault instead of them.
If you or your child have suffered injuries, seek immediate medical attention. Nothing is more important than getting your child the medical care they need. While they may not like that they will miss the rest of Halloween, their safety is top priority.
You should also call a lawyer. Even minor car accidents can cause severe injuries that take time to heal. Additionally, catastrophic injuries are costly. Injuries can cost thousands of dollars in medical bills, something you should not be on the hook to pay when someone else caused your accident.
Whether another driver simply was not paying attention, was speeding, or was driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a lawyer can help you determine if you are eligible for compensation to cover your medical bills and other expenses. While you focus on recovery, your lawyer can fight on your behalf.
Virginia Beach Car Accident Lawyers can Help You Recover After a Halloween Collision.
Halloween should be a fun evening for children and adults, but some people can ruin it for others. If you become involved in a Halloween collision, speak with a dedicated Virginia car accident lawyer. At East Coast Trial Lawyers, we take pride in helping personal injury clients get the justice they deserve. You can call us at 757-352-2237 or complete our online form to schedule a free consultation. We are located in Virginia Beach, and we proudly serve clients throughout Chesapeake, Eastern Shore, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk, Virginia, as well as North Carolina and nationwide.