Halloween Safety


NORTHERN VIRGINIA — A rainy Halloween awaits the region’s ghouls and goblins. Some of it could be severe and is expected to hit near-prime trick-or-treat hours.  A storm system expected to move into the area on Halloween could come with thunderstorms and strong winds of up to 25 mph, the National Weather Service said in its forecast on Wednesday.

The timing of the storm may offer a respite for trick-or-treaters, forecasters say.

Showers are most likely after 3 p.m. Thursday, with thunderstorms possible Thursday afternoon and evening, bringing chances for damaging winds and heavy rainfall.  Look for wind gusts topping 20 mph, making walking from house to house a challenge for kids. 

You should plan to get the kids back to the house by 6 to 7 p.m.,” says Storm Team4’s Lauryn Ricketts. “That’s not to say there won’t be a few scattered showers around during the middle part of the day and into the early evening; it just looks like the heavy line holds off until after 7 p.m.”

Regional weather is expected to get significantly worse after that. The rain that comes Thursday night will bring lightning, very strong winds and heavy rains that could create some flooding concerns and ponding on the roads, as well as small chances of hail or even an isolated tornado.

Should you venture out with the little ones, below are some Halloween Safety Tips.

Halloween Safety On and Off the Road

Kids love the magic of Halloween: Trick-or-treating, classroom parties and trips to a neighborhood haunted house. But for moms and dads, often there is a fine line between Halloween fun and safety concerns, especially when it comes to road and pedestrian safety.

Costume Safety

To help ensure adults and children have a safe holiday, the American Academy of Pediatrics has compiled a list of Halloween safety tips. Before Halloween arrives, be sure to choose a costume that won’t cause safety hazards.

  • All costumes, wigs and accessories should be fire-resistant.  Avoid masks, which can obstruct vision.
  • If children are allowed out after dark, fasten reflective tape to their costumes and bags, or give them glow sticks
  • When buying Halloween makeup, make sure it is nontoxic and always test it in a small area first
  • Remove all makeup before children go to bed to prevent skin and eye irritation

When They’re on the Prowl

  • A responsible adult should accompany young children on the neighborhood rounds.
  • If your older children are going alone, plan and review a route acceptable to you. 
  • Agree on a specific time children should return home.
  • Teach your children never to enter a stranger’s home or car.
  • Instruct children to travel only in familiar, well-lit areas and stick with their friends.
  • Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home
  • Children and adults are reminded to put electronic devices down, keep heads up and walk, don’t run, across the street

Safety Tips for Motorists

NSC offers these additional safety tips for parents – and anyone who plans to be on the road during trick-or-treat hours:

  • Watch for children walking on roadways, medians and curbs
  • Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully
  • At twilight and later in the evening, watch for children in dark clothing
  • Discourage new, inexperienced drivers from driving on Halloween