This Halloween, don’t let yourself be scared half to death by an avoidable injury to your little ones.
By Carl Waring
Children everywhere are looking forward to the next big excitement after the summer holidays: the thrilling time that is Halloween. Up and down the land, creatures of all sorts come out of the darkness in search of mischief and mayhem.
And while many Halloween activities go off with a bang and provide great enjoyment for children of all ages, unfortunately some kids end up slightly or even badly injured due to their festive outings. That can lead to No Win No Fee accident claims for such things as head injury compensation from nasty falls when trick-or-treating.
It’s certainly not what you want when your child walks out the door on Halloween night, causing immense trauma to them, you and the entire family. So here’s what to look out for this Halloween to make sure your loved ones enjoy themselves and come home safe.
Scary Stats and No Win No Fee Accident Claims
First, let’s look at what we know. According to figures compiled by the global organisation Safe Kids Worldwide, many parents simply are not aware of the real risks and dangers to their children at Halloween. In fact, it found that just one third of parents talked to their children about the potential hazards of going out and about on the night of October 31st.
Accidents involving vehicles are one of the biggest dangers at Halloween, primarily because children’s costumes tend to be black or very dark (witches, wizards and goblins were never known for bright and garish colours). This makes children hard to see on a gloomy October night. The same Safe Kids survey found that around twice as many children are knocked down by vehicles and killed while out walking the roads at Halloween. Additionally, for whatever reason, there’s always a spike in drunk driving around this time of year, making walking by the streets and roads even more perilous for those out celebrating.
Equally shocking is that some parents allow their children of age five or under to go trick-or-treating on their own. It’s a sure-fire way to leaving you searching for No Win, No Fee solicitors to handle a claim.
Staying Safe Out There
On Halloween night, make sure your children carry a torch or glow sticks so they’re able to light their way – avoiding falling over and hurting themselves – and are clearly visible to traffic. Never allow small children to either go out on their own, or with teenagers or younger children who might easily forget about them and leave them behind. Additionally, whatever kind of costume your child is wearing, sticking or stitching on reflective tape or bands will go a long way to ensure they’re clearly visible in the dark evening.
Is that it? Not quite! There’s a whole world of other possible risks to children at Halloween, and another of the big ones is the giddy focal point of many children: all those piles of sweets they amass as they go from door to door. Not only is a huge ingestion of sugary treats bad for any child’s health, but these days we all need to be aware of allergy risks. Food intolerances are on the rise, and unknowingly eating something that could quickly send you to hospital is the last thing you want your kids to do.
Also, to steer clear of solicitors and personal injury claims, it’s also worth bearing in mind the many kinds of masks that children wear at Halloween. Some attempt to look so lifelike that they can be rubbery and constrictive, causing problems with breathing. That’s certainly worth knowing if your child has asthma. Other masks might only have small slits for the eyes and not give children a clear view, when they need to keep their eyes peeled while out trick-or-treating.
Halloween safety even comes down to that old staple: the humble pumpkin. With an extremely thick skin that requires a sharp knife to carve it into a spooky face, the results can often be injuries to little hands. A far safer alternative is not carving a pumpkin at all, but having your child or children paint on a face instead – and they can paint their own faces at the same time, so there’s no need for a potentially problematic mask. As for lighting carved-out pumpkins, a plastic candle that’s powered by a battery is far safer than a lit one.
Taking all these precautions together will keep little terrors safe from harm and injury as they terrorise the neighbourhood at Halloween.
Carl Waring is a senior solicitor with Mayiclaim, and has over 25 years of experience in compensation claims and legal disputes.