Halloween may look a little different this year, as most will take proper precautions to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 while still enjoying alternate ways to participate. For most parts of the Carolinas, the holiday is not altogether canceled and both kids and adults are still able to have a scary good time with virtual and socially-distanced options.
Haunted houses and large gatherings are highly discouraged, but door-to-door trick-or-treating can be done safely if individually wrapped candy or goody bags are left for children to grab-and-go without direct contact. Additionally, be sure to wash your hands before handling all treats and wear a mask. Another prominent tip: Even with a costume mask, it is still critical that you wear a proper face covering underneath to avoid infecting people around you.
For those who will be celebrating at bars and other small gatherings, it’s important to share tips that will help to avoid pedestrian injuries and fatal collisions.
- If possible, avoid driving during the “haunting hours” between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. This is the time when trick-or-treaters will be the most active.
- Avoid distractions by staying off of your phone. This includes talking, texting or using other mobile apps. Disconnect and Drive!
- Yield to pedestrians. Children may not stop for your approaching car because they do not see it or they do not understand how to safely cross the street.
- No passing. Do not pass stopped vehicles, as the driver may be dropping off children or have stopped for trick-or-treaters you cannot yet see.
- Drive slowly. Be especially alert in residential neighborhoods – excited trick-or-treaters can move in unpredictable ways.
- Turn your headlights on. Even if it is still daylight out, it helps to have your lights on so children may better see your approaching car.
- Always plan ahead. Designate a sober driver before the gathering begins.
- Drinking means no driving. Never get behind the wheel when you have been drinking or ride in a car driven by someone who has.
- Call a ride. Use a taxi service or ride-shares such as Lyft or Uber.
- Help others. Do not hesitate to take the keys from friends or family members who may be impaired.
- Be a responsible host. Make sure you have alcohol-free drinks as an option.
- Report a drunk driver. If you encounter an impaired driver on the road, keep a safe distance and ask a passenger to call 911 – or pull over to a safe location to make the call yourself.
- Prescription, over-the-counter medications and illegal drugs can also impair your ability to drive safely.
Do not become a scary statistic this Halloween. What should be a fun holiday can turn into a real life horror story when people fail to take the proper safety precautions during the festivities.