Thursday, October 4, 2012

Halloween Safety

As we head into October and Halloween season, it's fun to pick out a costume and be someone else for a day. But especially with small children, sometimes those fun costumes can have hidden dangers that we just don't think about.

I am scouring the net looking for ideas for my own kids, and came across this one from Parents Magazine. Really cute, but also potentially very dangerous. Why?

Photo credit: Dani Steele/Parents Magazine
Apparently cotton balls are highly flammable. One guy who made a similar costume found out the hard way.

He attempted to light a cigarette, and the hood he was wearing (as part of the costume) caught fire. The fire spread, apparently, and he credits two nearby friends with helping him - otherwise he thinks he would not have been able to get out of the costume in time to save his life.

While obviously your child is not going to be smoking, there are plenty of other sources of open flame, especially at a child's level: luminaries lit on sidewalks, candles, Jack-o-lanterns, etc. Costumes with wide sleeves that hang down (think wizards, etc.), tassels or fringe, or billowy pants with lots of fabric should also be worn with caution. With heavy trick-or-treater traffic it's easy to lose track of a kid momentarily, or not be fully aware that someone is standing too close to something they shouldn't be. We can't seal our kids in a magic bubble, but we can be extra cautious during this fun holiday season.

More reading:

Halloween Fire Safety tips
Is your child's Halloween costume flammable? 

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