MARIPOSA – With Halloween just around the corner, children will soon be out in costume trekking through festive displays in search of candy.
However, more than ghosts could be lurking amongst the mid-fall fun, as Halloween costumes and decorations present a number of hidden fire hazards.
Cal Fire reminds everyone that with a few precautions taken, you can make the holiday safer:
- When choosing a costume, stay away from long trailing fabric. If your child is wearing a mask, make sure the eye holes are large enough so he or she can see out.
- Provide children with flashlights to carry for lighting or glow sticks as part of their costume.
- Dried flowers, cornstalks and crepe paper catch fire easily.
- Keep all decorations away from open flames and other heat sources like light bulbs and heaters.
- Use a battery-operated candle or glow-stick in jack-o-lanterns. If you use a real candle, use extreme caution. Make sure children and pets are watched at all times when candles are lit. When lighting candles inside jack-o-lanterns, use long, fireplace-style matches or a utility lighter. Be sure to place lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn and far enough out of the way of trick-or-treaters, doorsteps, walkways and yards.
- Remember to keep exits clear of decorations, so nothing blocks escape routes.
- 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. Be sure they know how to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire. (Have them practice, stopping immediately, dropping to the ground, covering their face with hands, and rolling over and over to put the flames out.)
- If your children are going to Halloween parties at others’ homes, have them look for ways out of the home and plan how they would get out in an emergency.
- Keep your eye out for moving vehicles and/or pedestrians at all time, especially in areas of poor lighting.
Daylight savings time is Sunday, Nov. 4. Don’t forget to change your clocks!
For more information visit www.fire.ca.gov.