Distracted Driving on Halloween
Halloween is fast approaching. It is such an exciting time to see masked trick-or-treaters running around our neighborhoods. But it can be a very scary time for distracted driving on Halloween!
In a study published by JAMA Pediatrics Journal, approximately 43% more pedestrians die on Halloween night than any other night of the year.
Why? There are several reasons:
- Fall nights bring on darkness sooner.
- More people are out and about on Halloween night.
- Trick-or-treaters have the job of literally scrounging the streets where cars commute, to travel door-to-door and collect their prize.
With more and more people tech-ing and driving, distracted driving on halloween is even worse than normal. This is because drivers are accessing their phones to get directions, communicate plans with others, and intoxicated driving. To ensure all party-goers and candy-snatchers make it home safely, it’s up to everyone to increase awareness and ensure safety. We have created a list of tips below:
For Pedestrians + Trick-or-Treaters:
- Trick or treat in large groups that are easily noticed.
- Stay in gated communities or areas where the roads are closed to thru traffic.
- Wear bright colors and costumes which are highly visible.
- Trick or treat early, before dark, when roads are less crowded and visibility is high
- Wear safety reflectors or incorporate reflective strips into costumes
- Carry flashlights, glow sticks or other light-emitting objects
- Do not consume alcohol if you are a parent and keep children close at all times
- Keep your attention on the road at all times. Distracted driving on Halloween is even worse this night of the year.
- Do not text + drive, drink + drive, or use any other technology while behind the wheel.
- Pull over if you need to manage children in your vehicle. Do not turn around to look in the back seat while driving.
- Continually scan the sides of the roads + sidewalks for pedestrians.
- Practice defensive driving and expect pedestrians to “dart out”.
- Reduce your speed considerably in areas with high pedestrian traffic.
- Be aware of the traffic and objects on all four sides of your vehicle and stay on “high alert”
The safest place to be this year is home! So here are some alternatives for Trick-or-Treaters!
- Look for Trunk or Treat events in your community. This is where cars line up in a parking lot and decorate their trunks. This is a safe environment since the parking lots are usually blocked off from traffic.
- Consider a Spooky Scavenger Hunt around the house or backyard.
- Halloween Movie Night. Rent a projector and show scary movies outside in the back yard!
- Drop off BOO Baskets full of candy at friends and neighbors houses.
Distracted driving on Halloween is not a superstition, it is a real issue facing our communities. SAFE 2 SAVE hopes you rock your best costume, collect the most candy, and make it home safely without a scare.