Keeping Your House Safe This Halloween
Halloween is an exciting holiday that many people look forward to; after all there’s fun costumes to pick out, candy to hand out and the kids get to go trick-or-treating. Halloween has the reputation of being a frightening holiday, but that doesn’t mean it has be dangerous. Whether you are hosting the neighborhood party or taking the kids out trick-or-treating, while you are planning a fun-filled ghostly night, it is also important to remember to keep your home safe. Taking a little time to prepare your home for what may happen on Halloween will prevent the risk of injuries and accidents. Here are a few tips to ensure your home is safe this Halloween.
Clear the Way for Trick-or-Treaters
As tempting as it may be to fill your lawn with lots of Halloween decorations, it may also pose a risk for trick-or-treaters that are anxious to get from one house to the next. If you want to display fun attractions, such as a graveyard, make sure to arrange the decorations in an area that won’t interfere with the pathway children (or adults) take to get to your neighbors homes. Also, make sure walkways and driveways are free from debris, such as rocks and twigs that may lead to trips and falls.
Secure Porch Railings and Steps
Before Halloween night arrives, do a careful inspection of the porch and railings to ensure they are safe and secure for young children and their accompanying adults. Look for loose screws, loose boards and chips or cracks in the steps that may cause trick-or-treaters to accidentally stumble and/or fall.
Halloween isn’t the same without a Jack-O-Lantern or two displayed on the porch. A few jack-o-lanterns glowing on the porch can make your home feel warm and welcoming for trick-or-treaters, but unfortunately using candles to illuminate the pumpkins can pose a burn and/or fire risk. Instead of using traditional candles, consider using battery powered LED’s, flameless candles or novelty jack-o-lanterns that come with battery powered pre-installed lighting.
Leave the Light On
Turning the lights down may add to the spooky effect, but it also increases the risk of an accident. Trick-or-treaters typically only go to homes that have their porch light on, so make sure the bulb is bright. It’s also a good idea to illuminate dark areas of your yard, especially if you aren’t going to be home, so consider turning on the floodlights over the garage and make sure the motion sensor lights around your home are working. If the pathway to your front door is dark, consider installing inexpensive solar lights along the driveway and walkway.
Secure Your Pets
Even the most loveable, friendly animals can get excited when costumed people are coming to the door. The last thing you want is to have your over-excited pet barking at or even worse, knocking over trick-or-treaters, so make sure pets are confined indoors and away from the doors. Consider using a baby gate to keep pets confined to a rear area of the house to prevent them from running out when the door is open or frightening little ghosts and goblins knocking at your door.
Secure Your Home
If you aren’t going to be home on Halloween, make sure to secure your home against possible vandals or burglars. Check the home security alarm to ensure it’s working correctly, leave a light and the television or radio on and make sure to securely lock the doors and windows. As tempting as it is, if you are going to be away from home, don’t leave candy out on the porch. It may seem like the nice thing to do, but there is a risk of someone tainting the candy, so it’s best to not take the chance.
While almost all trick-or-treaters and the adults accompanying them are only out to collect as many treats as possible, it is still important to be cautious when opening the door. If you are uncomfortable or have uneasy feelings about the person on the other side of your door, do not open it. Although Halloween has a reputation of being a frightful day, it doesn’t have to scary, especially when it comes to keeping your home fun and safe. So, have an enjoyable Halloween and we hope to see many Viera neighbors in cute and scary costumes, with buckets full of treats.