DRIVERS: Watch for ghosts and goblins Thursday

Keep safety in mind this Halloween (Creative Commons)

Keep safety in mind this Halloween (Creative Commons)

Krissy Vann
Presenter, Beat the Traffic

Wednesday, October 30, 2013, 10:48 AM -

The evening drive on October 31st is quite different than the other 364 days of the year. 

Thousands of ghouls, ghosts and goblins invade neighbourhoods in search of spooktacular tricks and treats. 

It’s important for parents to properly prepare their children to be safe during their quest for candy. It is equally important for drivers to be extra vigilant on their travels with so many kids out after dark.

Halloween safety needs to start well ahead of kids hitting the pavement with their pillowcase. Choosing a brightly coloured costume for the child is a wise choice to catch the eye of motorists. If the dream costume has been found in a dark shade, then the simple addition of reflective tape will greatly increase visibility of the trick-or-treater. 

Toronto Police Officer Chris Boddy recommends you avoid purchasing a Halloween mask as they can obstruct vision. Opt for make-up instead. Parents and children should always use sidewalks and the street should only be crossed at proper crosswalks. If a crosswalk is not available then look both ways before crossing the road. Using a flashlight will attract the attention of motorists while also reducing the risk of trip hazards on your route. No one should trick-or-treat alone. All children should be accompanied by a responsible adult.

The onus is not just on the guardians of the trick-or-treater to ensure a safe Halloween. The CAA says it is best to avoid driving in subdivisions between the hours of 6 and 9pm. If you must travel around, reduce your speed and give yourself extra time to get to your destination. Give tremendous attention when reversing out of driveways and be extra alert when approaching cross walks and intersections. Remember a ghost or goblin can pop out anywhere at any time, so do not allow yourself to be distracted while driving.

We all know Halloween is not an occasion just celebrated by children. Many adults use this holiday to host parties where alcohol is present. Officer Boddy reminds us that if you are attending a haunted soiree, plan a safe ride home ahead of time. Use a designated driver, taxi, transit or arrange to stay the night. Under no circumstances should the thought of drinking and driving be entertained.

THE TRAVEL & COMMUTING APP YOU NEED: Travelers Network is free to download for iPhone at the App Store. Get all the traffic info you need to ease your daily commute by downloading it today.

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