Parents always worry about their little kids being kidnapped on Halloween; however, what they should really be worried about is their little superhero or princess being hit by cars.
This year, there were mulitiple reports of young trick or treaters being hit by cars as they were walking around their neighborhoods in search of treats. Many of these accidents could have been prevented if the parents and children would have taken precautions to make sure their costumes were safe.
In the last 21 years, 115 pedestrians under the age of 18 have been run over by cars on October 31. This makes Halloween the deadliest pedestrian day of the year with 5.5 average deaths. This is more than double the any other day’s death toll of 2.6 deaths.
The most often killed pedestrians are ages 12 to 18 and make up 47 of the deaths. The second most fatally hit were ages 7 to 12 with 41 of the deaths, and the remaining 27 deaths were made up of children ages 6 and under. The Fatality Analysis Reporting System also shows that pedestrian deaths nearly double between 6 pm to 7 pm.
Experts suggest that kids should cross at crosswalks, carry flashlights, wear reflective clothing and avoid masks that limit vision. Also, teens should put away their cellphones, stop texting and picture taking, and keep their eyes on their path. Kate Carr, president and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide, states that “Studies show that teen pedestrian injuries are rising year round, while injuries among younger children are falling, possibly because of electronic distractions.”
Carr also states that if the community works together to limit distractions and stick to traffic laws, deaths and injuries for pedestrians should drop greatly.