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Halloween Accidents: Staying Safe, Protecting Your Rights

By: Dan Hausman

Halloween is one of my very favorite holidays. While I really enjoy Christmas and Thanksgiving because of the time I get to spend with my family and the traditions involved, Halloween allows me to tap into my creative side to create hilarious costumes. I have recently dressed up as a Saturday Night Live character named Stefan, an enormous Pumpkin, and, when I was a high school history teacher, a Super Mario Brothers video game character with my high school students. Plus, who doesn’t like Halloween candy!

While I hope that you enjoy Halloween as much as I do, I also think you should be on the lookout for potential threats that may affect you or your children on Halloween or its surrounding days. After all, a recent published study showed that Halloween is the day of the year in which the fourth most children are treated in emergency rooms around the country. Some common injuries are due to:

  • Motor vehicle collisions – On Halloween there are more pedestrians out than on typical days. Drivers may be distracted by the costumes of pedestrians, passengers, or their own costumes. Oftentimes, people have too much Halloween punch and step into their cars as drunk drivers.
  • Fires – Countless jack-o-lanterns are lit with candles every year. Trick-or-treaters and party attendees often wear long and flowing costumes.
  • Haunted houses and slips, trips, and falls – Haunted houses and walkways leading up to homes and apartments are often intentionally dark or smoke-filled. Cobwebs, pumpkins, ooze, goo, fake blood, and other obstacles are strewn on the ground and in the air. Costumed home owners and haunted house employees may get too into the spirit of Halloween and push or grab a guest.

Do what you can to protect yourself and your loved ones. Some safety tips include fastening reflective tape on you and your children’s costumes and candy bags, carrying and using a flashlight, walking rather than running, examining candy before eating or allowing children to eat, using sidewalks and crosswalks, abstaining from alcohol, and wearing flame resistant and short costumes. Please just remember to be very careful; no one wants to end up in an emergency room on a wonderful holiday.

Halloween should be an enjoyable experience for you and your children. I have loved it ever since my earliest memories of dressing up as a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. But the reality is that injuries can, and do, happen. If you face an injury, it is important to speak to a lawyer capable of handling your claims. At Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C., we have the years of experience needed to help you get a positive resolution. Learn more about your rights and how we can help by contacting us online or calling (202) 644-8303.