Halloween falls on the last day of National Pedestrian Safety Month and is historically one of the deadliest nights of the year for pedestrians across the nation. In preparation for All Hallows’ Eve and the end of daylight saving time on November 6, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) is encouraging Floridians to keep their gourd up and remain vigilant to ensure the safety of all who share the roadway.
“On Halloween, Florida’s communities will see an increase in pedestrians on the roadways during the evening hours where visibility is low,” said FLHSMV Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes. “If you decide to run amuck this Halloween, be sure to lay off the boos and be mindful of increased foot traffic to ensure everyone has a happy and safe holiday.”
On Halloween last year, there were 1,562 crashes on Florida roadways, resulting in 67 serious bodily injuries, and 14 fatalities. The majority of these crashes occurred at or around 5 p.m. – a time when peak afternoon travel commutes and dusk begin to coincide with one another.
FLHSMV strongly encourages parents, caregivers, and motorists to take extra care in safeguarding children. Follow these tips to avoid a scare, or worse, this Halloween:
- Pay attention and reduce distractions; turn off the radio and put down the phone.
- Slow down and use caution. Costumes may impair a child’s ability to see and hear approaching cars, preventing them from getting out of the roadway quickly.
- Watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks.
- Enter and exit driveways slowly and always check behind your vehicle before backing.
- Keep an eye out for trick-or-treaters who may suddenly dart into traffic from between parked cars.
Parents and Trick-or-Treaters:
- Be seen! Carry a flashlight, wear bright clothing, and put reflective tape on costumes and goody bags.
- Use sidewalks whenever possible. If sidewalks are not available, walk facing traffic as close to the curb as possible.
- Remind children to never run out into the street or cross between parked cars.
- Cross streets at crosswalks or intersections. Make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
- Be aware of surroundings. Don’t wear headphones or text while walking.
- Children should not trick-or-treat unsupervised. Walk with your trick-or-treaters and hold the hands of young children. Review pedestrian safety with teens if they trick-or-treat without supervision.
For more Halloween safety tips, visit FLHSMV’s website.