The spookiest night of the year is less than a week away, and the Naperville Police Department has a few tips for residents to safely enjoy the holiday. Whether trick-or-treating, handing out candy at home, or driving around town, people should know what to look out for this Sunday.
While Naperville does not have set trick-or-treating hours, the department suggests that young children end trick-or-treating when it gets dark, and that older children end the night by 8 p.m.
People should make sure their costumes are flame retardant, and avoid long costumes to prevent trips, falls, and contact with flames. They should also avoid costumes that are overly scary or require any type of weapon.
Those who decide to wear a face covering under their costume mask should make sure they can breathe properly. If there is any trouble, the costume mask should be the one to go.
Kids should wear light colors or reflective tape on their costumes for nighttime visibility. “Glow sticks and flashlights are also fun ways to light the way,” the department said.
Parents should not allow kids to trick-or-treat alone, but should keep groups small and maintain a safe distance from other groups when walking around the neighborhood.
If parents let older kids go trick-or-treating without them, they should create a map of a safe and familiar route, preferably within their own neighborhood. They should also agree on a curfew and have pre-set check in times.
Kids should carry a fully charged cell phone for quick communication with parents. Parents should review with children how to call 911.
Kids should never go inside homes, but rather stick to porches at all times. Parents should know where any registered sex offenders live in the neighborhood and avoid those houses. Information on sex offenders, searchable by location, is available on the City of Naperville website.
Kids also should never accept rides from anyone, including familiar adults, without checking with a trusted adult first.
Street safety practices should be used throughout the night, including looking both ways before crossing, crossing only at street corners, using sidewalks, and never running between parked vehicles. It is also important to not take shortcuts through backyards, alleys, or parks.
At the end of the night, an adult should inspect all candy in a well-lit place, and discard anything homemade or unwrapped. Kids should only eat unopened candies and other treats in their original packaging.
Drivers should be extremely cautious any time, but especially on Halloween during the popular trick-or-treating hours of 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. They should stay alert for excited kids darting out into traffic, enter and exit driveways with caution, avoid distractions, and never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Halloween For Residents
Those who wish to participate in Halloween by passing out candy should consider ways to protect themselves and others from COVID-19. These include knowing when to mask up, maintaining social distance, and washing hands often.
The City of Naperville is offering free signs that indicate whether residents are welcoming trick-or-treaters this Halloween. They can be downloaded and printed or picked up at the Municipal Center.
And lastly, residents should report any suspicious or criminal activity to the Naperville Police Department immediately by calling 911.
Just a few tips for a spooktacular Halloween night.
Naperville News 17’s Casey Flanagan reports.
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