Tips for Halloween Safety for Decorations, Costumes, and More

Halloween is a time for fun, but safety is important too

Halloween Safety - Jack-o'-lanterns
Daniel Troutman/Getty Images

A happy Halloween means lots of fun, but it's also important to be aware of some important safety tips. Great Halloween costumes, yummy treats, and fun Halloween parties all need to be balanced out with a few essential tips for Halloween safety, especially when decorating in and around your house.

Halloween fun and activities can raise the risk for injuries and accidents. On Halloween, the risk of home fires, burn-related injuries and falls goes up significantly.

As you gear up for Halloween, keep in mind these important safety tips from the experts at Underwriters Laboratories (UL), the independent product safety organization:

When using Halloween lights, check to make sure that there are no loose connections or frayed wires, or cracked sockets. Do not use nails or staples to hang light strings and use plastic clips or hooks instead of metal to reduce the risk for electric shock.

  • Do not overload extension cords or sockets and use heavy-duty extension cords for Halloween decorations that require high wattage.
  • Keep candles away from items that could catch fire easily, such as curtains and paper decorations.
  • Look for the “UL” mark on lights and other electrical Halloween decorations before you buy them. This mark indicates that the product has been found to be free of foreseeable hazards such as a risk of electrical shock and fire.
  • Check Halloween costumes for labels that indicate that they’re flame resistant. This doesn’t mean that the costume won’t catch fire -- just that it’s more likely to resist burning.
  • Try to avoid Halloween costumes that have billowing sleeves or skirts or are too big since they increase the risk of tripping and are more likely to catch fire easily if they are near candles or other flames.
  • Make sure children can see and be seen. Have children wear reflective tape on their costumes and carry flashlights so that they are more visible to drivers on the road. And try to avoid masks, which can affect how well kids can see their surroundings.

    Continue Reading