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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Have a happy and safe Halloween.

Courtesy Milton Police Department

The Milton Police Department wishes all residents a happy, fun and safe Halloween, said Police Chief Deborah Harrell, and as such has issued a list of tips to keep trick-or-treaters safe this Oct. 31.

The Costume

Keep costumes short to prevent trips and falls. Use make-up instead of a mask. Masks often obstruct a child's vision, making tasks like crossing the street and going up and down stairs dangerous. Make sure children wear light colors, put reflective tape on their costumes, or carry flashlights and/or glow sticks. The chances of a child getting hit by a car increase by four times on Halloween, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study.

The Trick or Treating

Make sure older children trick-or-treat with friends, never alone, and carry a cell phone for emergencies. Parents should map out a safe route and stress staying in well-lighted, populated areas. Young children should be accompanied by adults. Instruct children to stop only at familiar homes where the outside lights are on. Remind children not to enter the homes or cars of strangers. Instruct them to scream and run if a stranger stops them and offers them candy to get in a vehicle. Follow your community’s trick-or-treating hours (generally early afternoon to 9 p.m. in Milton, though this varies by neighborhood, so check with your neighbors or homeowners’ association).

A good alternative to “trick-or-treating” is for parents to organize parties at home, in schools, or in community centers. If driving your children from neighborhood to neighborhood, be extra careful and: Place something highly visible on your car (like an electric Jack-O-Lantern) so your child does not accidentally get in another person’s vehicle Drive below the posted speed limit Do not text or use a cell phone Do not pass stopped cars, as they may be letting out children Park in a safe spot and use hazard lights while dropping children off

The Treats

Remind children not to eat any of their treats until they get home. Parents should check all treats at home in a well-lighted area and dispose of anything that seems to have been tampered with, has been opened, or is not wrapped. Remember to also inspect fruits for anything suspicious. As always, the City of Milton Police Department is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist residents. In an emergency, always call 911. Otherwise, dial 678-297-6300 Option 1 for the non-emergency dispatch line or visit the department’s Facebook page by clicking here.

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