On Halloween Let the Children Have the Right of Way

BURNABY, BC, Oct. 19 /CNW/ - Halloween is one of the busiest nights of the year to be out driving. There are more pedestrians, and most of them are children.

"Pedestrian traffic is always busy on Halloween night," stated Allan Lamb, executive director of the BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation. "Unlike New Year's Eve, for example, the majority are small children, and with all of the excitement, they tend to forget to watch for moving vehicles."

Children are more likely to be struck by a car in areas with heavy traffic volumes and a high density of parked cars. Lamb reminds drivers to be patient and remember to look for children darting out from between parked cars or rushing into intersections without looking.

Children aged 5 to 14 years are at the greatest risk for pedestrian-related fatalities, but the presence of parents or caregivers can help reduce that risk.

Children should be accompanied by an adult to ensure that everyone travels together in a group and pays attention to traffic. "It's a good idea to make sure that you go over Halloween safety rules with children before heading out to trick-or-treat," says Lamb

Dark nights make it difficult for drivers to see clearly and they may not see your child. Ensure that children are easily seen in the dark with reflective costumes and flashlights.

This year Halloween falls on a Saturday, a night that typically sees higher instances of impaired driving and Lamb has an important message for drivers too, "do not consume alcohol or drugs before you get behind the wheel. Driving while impaired is almost guaranteeing that someone will get seriously injured or killed."

The BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation offers some helpful safety tips.


    For Drivers -

    -   Slow down as you drive through residential areas - 10 km slower can
        make a big difference in an emergency stop.
    -   Watch for children darting out from behind parked cars.
    -   Come to a full stop at designated intersections and proceed slowly
        when driving through.
    -   Do not drive if you have been drinking - find alternate
        transportation such as riding with a designated driver, taking a taxi
        or transit.

    For Parents and Children -

    -   Children wear light or reflective costumes that are easy to move in
        and don't cause tripping, and use face paint instead of wearing a
    -   Children carry a flashlight
    -   Never run out between two parked cars. Always cross at a designated
        intersection, looking both ways and make sure drivers see you before
        you cross.
    -   If there is no sidewalk, always walk facing traffic and as far off
        the road as possible.
    -   Parents make sure the "loot route" is planned along well-lit streets
    -   Parents accompany children and make sure the group travels together.
    -   Parents review the "rules of the road" before starting out.

    Other Tips for a Safe Halloween -

    -   Never eat treats until you get home and an adult has checked your
    -   Check wrappers of commercially sold treats for signs of tampering.
    -   Notify the police if anything dangerous is found so they can find the
        person responsible before anyone gets hurt.

About BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation

The BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation is a non-profit registered charity working with families, communities and business partners to reduce the number and severity of traffic crashes and injuries in B.C. For more information visit www.BCAATSF.ca or call 604-298-5107.

                             DRIVE TO SAVE LIVES

SOURCE BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation

For further information: For further information: Lennea Durant, Media Relations, BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation, Tel: (604) 875-1182, E-mail: lenneadurant@shaw.ca; Allan Lamb, Executive Director, BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation, Tel: (604) 297-2151, E-mail: allan.lamb@tsf-bcaa.com

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