Halloween Safety Tips for Drivers and Pedestrians

October 18, 2021

Halloween Safety Tips for Drivers and Pedestrians

Halloween is an enjoyable holiday for children and families, with kids getting to dress up in costumes and get candy out trick-or-treating. Older teens and adults may also get to go to costume parties. While many people go out and enjoy their Halloween evenings, the holiday also poses risks for trick-or-treaters and other pedestrians. 

Why is Halloween So Dangerous for Pedestrians?

Accident records from the years 1990 through 2018, published by the Fatality Analysis Reporting System, of pedestrian fatalities of children, showed that Halloween was the deadliest day for pedestrian children, with more than twice as many fatalities occurring on Halloween than on any other day in the year. About one-quarter of all child pedestrian fatalities on Halloween occurred during the 6 p.m. hours, while over 60 percent of fatalities occurred between the hours of 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. 

Some of the factors that increase the risk of pedestrian accidents on Halloween include:

  • Increased pedestrian traffic, especially young children out trick-or-treating who may be wearing dark-colored costumes that make them harder to see and who may dart out into the street without looking both ways for traffic
  • Intoxicated drivers, as older teens and adults may go out to Halloween parties where they consume alcohol or drugs
  • Low lighting and night driving, which impedes visibility for drivers
  • Young, inexperienced drivers, who make up a disproportionate percentage of the drivers involved in fatal pedestrian accidents

Tips for Pedestrians

Parents can follow these tips to help keep their children and themselves safe while out walking for trick-or-treating:

  • Always have children trick-or-treat in groups. Young children (under the age of 12) should always be accompanied by chaperones, who can look out for vehicles when children get too excited by trick-or-treating. Make sure there are enough chaperones to keep an eye on all the children in a group.
  • If possible, try to finish trick-or-treating before sunset. If you go out after dark, make sure trick-or-treaters and chaperones wear costumes or clothing that are brightly colored, or add reflective tape. Trick-or-treaters and chaperones should also carry flashlights or lanterns to illuminate where they are walking and to help make themselves more visible to motorists.
  • Always walk on the sidewalk if one is available. If there is no sidewalk, stick as close to the edge of the street or road as possible, walking in the direction facing oncoming traffic.
  • Always cross at marked crosswalks or intersections. If you must cross in the middle of the street or road, never walk out from in between parked or stopped vehicles.
  • Remember to look both ways before crossing. Never assume that a driver sees you or will yield the right of way; only cross in front of an approaching vehicle if it has come to a full stop.

Tips for Drivers

Drivers can also act to help reduce the risks of pedestrian accidents by:

  • Never driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Always have a designated driver or take public transit or a taxi/rideshare to get home.
  • Avoid texting-while-driving and other distractions while behind the wheel.
  • Slow down below the speed limit, especially when driving in residential areas or areas where there are lots of trick-or-treaters or pedestrians. While driving around trick-or-treaters, be prepared to stop at a moment’s notice, as children may dart across the street without looking for oncoming traffic. 

Contact a Trenton Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Pedestrian Accident Case in New Jersey

Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries because of pedestrian accidents in New Jersey? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Kalavruzos, Mumola, Hartman, Lento & Duff, LLC represent clients injured by pedestrian accidents in Hamilton Township, Ewing Township, Lawrence Township, Princeton, and throughout New Jersey. Call (609) 586-9000 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 2681 Quakerbridge Rd., Hamilton Township, NJ 08619.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.