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Vernon RCMP, firefighters offer tips for a safe Halloween

‘The number one thing to remember: be visible,’ said Fire Chief David Lind
Scooby Doo Monty Roussel (left) goes hunting for Scooby snacks and Halloween treats with grandma Cathy Roussel (centre) and woodland fairy Zoey Roussel during a past Downtown Vernon Association Halloween Treat Trail. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

With Halloween approaching on Tuesday, the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP and Vernon Fire Rescue Services are offering tips to have a safe time in spooky season.

“Soon little ghouls, goblins, monsters, and superheroes will be scouring our neighbourhoods in search of treats,” the RCMP said in a press release. “While it can be a magical evening full of fun and excitement, safety needs to be top priority and the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP want to offer some important safety tips to ensure everyone has a safe and spooktacular evening.”

Tips for parents and guardians include:

• Plan routes in advance and arrange meeting places and times;

• Remind children to remove masks when moving between houses;

• Review trick-or-treating safety rules with your children before they leave the house;

For trick-or-treaters, remember:

• Never trick-or-treat alone. Always walk with an adult or a group of friends;

• A flashlight, glow stick, or reflective tape will increase your visibility;

• Never eat any candy until it has been checked by an adult you trust;

• Walk on sidewalks. Walk on the left-hand side of the road facing traffic if there is no sidewalk;

• Cross at crosswalks, watch for vehicles, and never jaywalk;

• Wait outside for treats, never enter a house;

The RCMP has advice for drivers, too:

• Remember, kids can get caught up in all the excitement and pedestrian safety may not be at the front of their mind.

• Drive with care and watch for little monsters who may be darting between homes and across roadways hunting for goodies;

• Focus on driving and avoid distractions;

• Slow down in residential neighbourhoods.

Vernon Fire Rescue Services (VFRS) has more tips for having a safe Halloween.

“The number one thing to remember: be visible,” said Fire Chief David Lind. “Now that the sun is setting earlier, it’s important that kids’ costumes have some form of reflection on them so drivers see everyone crossing the road or walking from house to house.”

When choosing a costume, VFRS says it’s important to think about ease of movement, tripping hazards and an ability to see what’s around you.

When it comes to home decoration, VFRS reminds:

• Use a battery-operated candle or glow stick in your Jack-o’-lantern instead of fire

• Teach children to stay away from open flames, including Jack-o’-lanterns

• Ensure exits are clear of decorations and that smoke alarms are working

• Keep decorations away from flames and other heat sources like light bulbs and heaters

Fore more safety resources in Vernon, visit the Community Safety Office downtown at 3010 31st Avenue.

READ MORE: Where to watch Halloween fireworks in the North Okanagan

READ MORE: B.C. woman turns front yard into Halloween extravaganza

Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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