Written by Calgary's Child Magazine
Halloween should be spooky - not scary! The Calgary Partners for Safety have been patrolling the streets on Halloween night for almost 30 years to keep young Calgarians safe while they trick-or-treat, and this year is no exception. From 6pm to 8pm. On Monday, October 31, hundreds of vehicles will be on Calgary’s streets providing high-visibility assistance to families who decide to trick-or-treat this year.
The Partners for Safety program’s goals are to provide Halloween safety information to parents and children; and to patrol communities and provide a visible presence on Halloween night.
Coordinated by Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Partners for Safety include the Calgary Police Service, Emergency Medical Services, Calgary Fire Department, Calgary Transit and Calgary Community Standards (Bylaw and 9-1-1). Any child experiencing a problem on Halloween can go to any one of these partners for help.
During regular operations, the Calgary Police Service and Emergency Medical Services will have units patrolling residential neighborhoods. The Calgary Fire Department will also have vehicles on patrol, and community fire stations will be open in between emergency responses as a safe place for trick-or-treaters to ask for help if they need it.
Calgary Transit buses and CTrains are in the community day and night providing essential transit services. On Halloween, if trick-or-treaters need help, they can approach any transit vehicle they spot. Bus and CTrain operators have radios and can contact the appropriate emergency personnel if needed.
Important health & safety tips:
- Keep pets contained and away from the front entrance, or consider handing out treats outside;
- Instead of real candles, opt for LED candles or LED lighting to create that spooky ambiance;
- Ensure sidewalks, front porches and steps are well-lit and free from obstacles.
Halloween tips for kids:
- Tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) where you’re going, who you’re going with, and when you’ll be home;
- Bring a cell phone in case something changes;
- All pedestrian rules still apply! - look both ways and walk, don’t run, across the street at intersections;
- Trick-or-treat all the way down one side of the street before crossing to the other, avoid zig-zagging across the road;
- Wear bright, reflective clothing so you are visible to drivers on the road;
- Avoid shortcuts through alleyways, lanes, or through private property;
- Stay in busy, well-lit areas if possible and bring a flashlight;
- Never enter a house or a car while you’re trick-or- treating;
- If a situation or person makes you feel uncomfortable, trust your gut and walk away. Call a parent or trusted adult if you’re not sure what to do, or approach one of our Partners for Safety vehicles.
Before you wear your costume out:
- Have kids wear the full costume around the house for an hour or two a couple of weeks before Halloween to make sure the shoes, clothing, and accessories are comfortable (make changes if needed);
- Avoid costumes which are extremely dark or all black! Choose one with bright colors and consider adding reflective tape to make sure drivers can see you;
- Pick materials, garments, and accessories labeled ‘flame-resistant’;
- All costume accessories, such as sticks, rods, or wands should be soft and flexible with no sharp edges;
- It is frequently cold! Costumes should be loose enough that it can be worn over warm clothing or a heavy jacket;
- Make sure Halloween costumes aren’t too big or long to avoid tripping hazards; the costume should not cover ankles and hands;
- Make sure any costume masks are comfortable - bulky masks can make it hard to see cars and other hazards or can pinch or hurt; consider switching to make-up instead of a mask where possible.
For more tips on having a fun and safe Halloween, visit calgaryschild.com or Calgary.ca/halloweensafety.
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