SHERIFF CARMINE MARCENO’S NOVEMBER SAFETY & SECURITY TIP: PROTECTING OUR TRICK-OR-TREATERS
Among the many responsibilities entrusted to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office is the safety and protection of our children a responsibility atop my list.
Halloween is a wondrous time for most children. The mixture of candy, costumes and frolicking kids makes for a fun and memorable time of the year.
The mixture of children, masked costumes, motor vehicles and dark of night makes for a daunting and worrisome time for those of us here at the sheriff’s office.
Older children must be reminded to keep their electronic devices primarily cell phones in their pockets. While all too many injuries result from distraction, children crossing streets and roadways on Halloween night is concerning under the best of circumstances. Texting and other cell phone distractions can turn an evening of fun into a tragic incident.
If sidewalks aren’t available, children should walk facing traffic. While walking in groups is preferable, please ensure that larger groups don’t overflow into the middle of roadways.
Costumes should include reflective tape or glow sticks. Face paint should be considered in lieu of masks which can obstruct a child’s vision.
Trick-or-treaters should complete an entire side of the street prior to crossing the roadway. Crossing back and forth, from house to house, increases the chances of injury. Additionally, extra caution should be exercised when crossing driveways. Children are generally smaller SUVs and crossover vehicles are generally elevated and, in darkness, this could also become hazardous.
Driving always requires vigilance and alertness. Driving on Halloween and during school pick-up/drop-off demands the highest level of attentiveness. Please ensure that headlights are on. Please drive slowly through residential areas. If you plan to attend Halloween parties and social gatherings, ensure that even the slightest impairment results in some form of taxi service or the use of a designated driver.
Please take a few moments to share safety recommendations with your children prior to the start of their trick-or-treating activities. Our children are cherished gifts and deserve the highest level of protection.