PUTNAM COUNTY, N.Y. -- As all of the little goblins and princesses take to the streets to collect their bounty of candy, Putnam County Sheriff Donald B. Smith is urging residents to exercise care on Oct. 31 to help ensure the safety of children celebrating Halloween or other harvest season festivities.
Parents are urged to observe the following safety tips:
- Face Paint is safer than a mask – and it’s more fun.
- If your child does wear a mask, make sure it has adequate holes for proper respiration and peripheral vision.
Trick-or-Treaters Should Follow These Rules :
- Wear some sort of reflective clothing.
- Carry a bright orange bag.
- Carry a flashlight or glow stick.
- Walk on the sidewalk or on the left side of the road facing traffic.
- Young children should always be accompanied by an adult:
- Either a parent or older child should stay within close range and never let the children go down a street by themselves. Walk with the children to each house and wait in the driveway or by the door until the children return.
- Older children should always travel in pairs or groups – they should:
- Never venture down dark, empty streets.
- Let parents know their route.
- Always walk together to the front door of each house.
- Never run across yards or streets.
- Avoid dark, unlighted houses:
- Never go to the door of a house that seems unoccupied or has no outside lights on.
- Children should save all candy until they get home:
Parents should closely inspect all candy and throw away all unwrapped or opened candy or suspicious looking goodies. If the child becomes ill, call a doctor or emergency room immediately. Try to determine what the child has eaten and where it came from. Save all wrappers.
Avoid fire hazards:
- Remember – your jack-o-lantern and any other electrical decorations can be a fire hazard. Keep them out of the reach of small children and away from flammable materials.
Never leave your house unattended:
- An empty house on Halloween is an invitation to trouble. If you have to leave your house, make sure all the doors are locked.
Smith noted that the Sheriff’s Office, the State Police, and the Carmel, Kent, and Cold Spring police departments all plan to have an increased number of patrols on duty on Halloween.
In addition, community organizations like REACT (Radio Emergency Associated Communications Teams) will also have volunteer members out to act as extra eyes and ears for law enforcement.
“Children dressing up in cute costumes, getting treats, bobbing for apples–activities like those are the fun and enjoyable parts of the night," Smith said. "But causing mischief and damaging or defacing other people’s property—those are very negative activities that will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
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