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ASK THE EXPERTS

Stay safe this Halloween, avoid real-life scares

POSTED: November 9, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Whether it’s showing off costumes in a Halloween parade or collecting candy while trick-or-treating, Halloween is a holiday-favorite among children and adults.

  

But along with disguised children on the hunt for candy comes a heightened need for safety.

  

The Dawson County Sheriff’s Office and Dawson County Emergency Services are offering a few tips for parents to keep their children orderly and safe during the excitement that is Halloween.

  

“Well for starters, parents need to keep their kids out of the road,” said Lt. Tony Wooten with the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office.

  

Wooten noted that children can dart into the middle of the road without looking, especially if they are on the trick-or-treat trail. And as the fall days grow darker, it becomes more important for parents to keep a close eye on their kids when crossing the street.

  

“Young children should always be accompanied by an adult and dressed in bright, easily visible colors,” Wooten said.

  

Also, carrying a flashlight is recommended.

  

Billy Thurmond, director of the county’s emergency services, urged parents to teach their children to never enter a stranger’s house.

  

Wooten urged parents to check candies and trick-or-treat items before allowing their children to eat them.

  

Thurmond said items that are unwrapped should be discarded.

  

But perhaps the most effective way to ensure a child’s safety, authorities say, is to allow children to trick-or-treat only at the houses of people they know or one of the various community Halloween events.

  

“There are plenty of Halloween or harvest events at local churches and the outlet mall, designed to create a fun and safe environment for kids,” Wooten said.

 

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