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Happy Halloween!!  Kids are going to be out in full force tonight.  ICBC is asking drivers to slow down, be extra careful and expect the unexpected, particularly on residential roads.   According to ICBC statistics on average 330 people are injured in car crashes across the province on Halloween.  Here are some things for drivers to keep in mind to help decrease that number:

  1.  Remember that kids are going to be super excited tonight and may forget to use their “road sense”.  Watch carefully and expect kids to do things that you wouldn’t otherwise expect;
  2. Kids can be difficult to see when they are trick or treating, and it can be difficult for them to see you depending on their costume;
  3. Expect kids in unexpected places like driveways, alleys and parking lots.  Expect them to try to cross in the middle of the street and watch for kids behind your vehicle if you are backing up;
  4. Drive slowly and with extra caution particularly in residential areas;
  5. Tonight in particular is a night to make sure that you are not distracted by your phone.  ICBC reports that distracted driving is one of the main causes of crashes with pedestrians.  Tonight with all the kids on the roads make sure that you have put your phone away;
  6. Make sure you plan a safe ride home.  Halloween is a fun night for adults too and that often means enjoying an adult beverage.  Alcohol consumption changes your reaction time.  Don’t drink and drive.  Arrange for a designated driver or call a taxi, a driving home service, transit or call a sober friend.

To help keep your trick or treaters safe, remind them of a few of these things:

  1.  Be bright and be seen.  Put reflective tape on your outfit so that motorists can see you and make sure that you carry a flash light;
  2. Check the visibility of any masks.  Make sure that  your kids are able to see what is around them;
  3. If your kids are trick or treating without you, make sure that you have planned a safe route for them and that you know where they will be.  Plan in advance for a pick up time and make sure everyone knows the location and how to get there;
  4. Remind your kids not to use ear buds while they are walking around trick or treating.  It is important that they can hear what is going on around them, particularly that they can hear cars, to help keep them safe;
  5. Make sure that your kids are trick or treating in a group.  A group helps keep them safe and helps drivers see them.

Have fun tonight and enjoy the candy.