October 26, 2010 – With Halloween parties and trick-or-treaters coming up this weekend, ICBC is calling on parents and drivers to plan ahead and make smart decisions for a safe weekend of festivities.
According to the five-year average (2005-2009), on Halloween night, between 3 pm and midnight, there are approximately 440 crashes resulting in 150 injured victims on B.C. roads.
Here are ICBC’s spooktacular safety tips for parents and drivers to ensure a safe and fun weekend for all:
- Dress to be seen: Let’s not spoil our kids’ fun. Halloween is about putting on the spookiest outfit possible and that often involves dark colours. A good solution is to buy some reflective tape that you can add to the outfit or even to their shoes or bag – as long as it makes them stand out against the dark road.
- The best ghouls see everything: Scary masks are a key part of many Halloween costumes but it’s important that your child wears a mask that doesn’t hinder their ability to fully see what’s going on around them. Put the mask over your own face to check the visibility and make any necessary adjustments.
- The best ghouls hear everything too: As adults, we know that hearing is just as important as seeing to ensure our safety around roads. Remind your children to not use their cellphone or to listen to their MP3 player – they should keep their fun focused on Halloween and all the candy.
- Safety in numbers: If you’re going for a walk on this spookiest of nights, you’ll be safer in a group. Walking in numbers will help drivers and others see your children and they should always be accompanied by an appropriate number of adults.
- Gone haunting: If your kids are heading out for some trick-or-treating fun, make sure you help them plan their route ahead of time so they get home safely. Consider a route that takes them through a quiet residential area away from busy main roads and parking lots. And remind them to cross streets at designated points.
- A fright’s just around the corner: Drivers need to slow down and expect the unexpected. Children can easily get caught up in the excitement of Halloween and forget to use caution, so slow down and be especially alert in residential areas. Limit any distractions in your car so your focus is solely on the road ahead.
- The ghouls may not notice you: Children may have very limited visibility while wearing masks and costumes – don’t assume they see you approaching. And remember to always yield to pedestrians. By doing so, you help ensure they cross the road safely.
- Beware of those dark alleys: Surprises often lurk in the darkest of places so enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully. Watch for little trick-or-treaters when backing up.
- Don’t end on a true scare: If you’re hosting or attending a Halloween party, always ensure there are safe options to get home, such as designated drivers or taxi numbers at hand.
According to the five-year average (2005 – 2009), on Halloween night between 3pm and midnight there are approximately:
- 290 crashes and 110 injuries in the Lower Mainland.
- 60 crashes and 20 injuries on Vancouver Island
- 30 crashes and 10 injuries in the North Central region.
- 50 crashes and 20 injuries in the Southern Interior.
The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia is a provincial Crown corporation established in 1973 to provide universal auto insurance to B.C. motorists. www.icbc.com.