Trick or treat safety: Police share tips to protect kids on Halloween

Traffic is biggest safety concern amid trick-or-treating hours

Some parents may let their guard down on a fun night like Halloween while taking their kids trick-or-treating -- but police say there are some steps people should be taking to help keep children safe.

STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. – Hopefully, everyone who is asked on Halloween night offers up a treat and not a trick, but that doesn’t mean parents should let their guard down.

As trick-or-treating time approaches, there are some concerns about drugs disguised as candy. Recently, drug smugglers in California tried to get pills across the border by placing them into familiar candy packaging like Skittles, SweetTarts and Whoppers.

Something else parents should know: Many registered sex offenders are allowed to pass out candy on Halloween. If that’s a concern of yours, check to see if there are offenders where you’ll be trick-or-treating. Michigan’s sex offender registry website is easy to use.

But, despite those concerns, do you know what the biggest threat to kids will be on Halloween night?

Traffic.

“The bigger threat is the volume of kids at night wearing dark costumes,” said Sterling Heights police Chief Dale Dwojakowski. “Accidents are definitely elevated, there’s way higher odds of getting hit by a car than getting injured with tainted candy.”

Chief Dwojakowski says the statistics makes sense. Children are running all over the streets while cars are trying to get through. He suggests making children more visible.

“If they can have a glow stick or several glow sticks, flashlights, light up pales and make sure they are crossing at crosswalks,” he said.

Also, one-third of fatal accidents on Halloween reportedly involve a driver between 15-26 years old.

“So, these are relatively new drivers with a ton of kids, so it’s a recipe for disaster,” Dwojakowski said. “If you’re a parent with a young driver, I would suggest keeping them home or really stress about driving slowly and staying off cell phones. That’s where the danger is.”


About the Author:

Nick joined the Local 4 team in February of 2015. Prior to that he spent 6 years in Sacramento covering a long list of big stories including wildfires and earthquakes. Raised in Sterling Heights, he is no stranger to the deep history and pride Detroit has to offer.