Halloween is coming, and for many that means a fun and exciting night of costumes, parties, and treats. But with the treats also comes the tricks, which can sometimes spell trouble. The inherent nature of Halloween invites a slew of mishaps, so be aware of some of these common accidents that can happen on your watch this Halloween, and make sure you’re prepared to help prevent them.
It’s a tradition to carve pumpkins, and then to light them at night. But if anyone were to accidentally bump that lit pumpkin and knock it over, you could be looking at some serious fire damage to your porch and home, and possibly even some major injuries. To prevent this from happening, use battery-powered lights to light your pumpkins so that no open flame has the chance to spread.
Slips and Falls
Halloween falls during a particularly temperamental time of the year weather-wise, depending on where you live. Late October could bring a brisk but dry Halloween, but could also bring heavy rain and even snow. There’s not a guarantee that all sidewalks and driveways will be free of snow and ice, so prepare your trick-or-treaters with warm clothing and shoes or boots with good traction to prevent injuries from slipping and falling.
Another less-pleasant Halloween tradition is vandalism. Some common forms of vandalism on Halloween are smashing pumpkins on cars, hitting car mirrors with bats, and egging houses and cars. Fortunately, vandalism is covered under most homeowners insurance policies, so any damage exceeding your deductible will be covered.
To prevent damages from vandalism, consider placing “No Trespassing,” or “Beware of Dog,” signs out to deter pranksters. Park your car in your garage, or at least in your driveway. If you’re going to be away from home, form a neighborhood watch group so that neighbors are watching your homes, and that you can be on the lookout as you roam the neighborhood for anything suspicious.
Trick or treaters getting hurt on your property
If a trick-or-treater is to fall on your property or injure themselves in another way, you may be liable for their injuries. Your homeowner’s insurance includes liability coverage to protect those injured while on your property. To prevent any accidents to visitors on your property, make sure your yard, driveway, and porch are well-lit and free of any obstacles. Clear any snow and ice to help prevent slipping. Also, keep your pet away from the door so no pet-related accidents can occur, as the costumes, lights, and strangers can cause anxiety in many normally well-behaved pets.
With children roaming everywhere, driving can be especially hazardous on Halloween. If you find you must suddenly swerve to miss a trick-or-treater, and strike a pole, parked car, or other obstacle, your auto insurance policy should cover you after your deductible, and your liability coverage can cover injuries, depending on the specifics of your policy.
To avoid the hazards of driving on Halloween, consider walking or riding a bike if possible. If you must venture out in your car, be ready to drive as slowly as possible, walking-speed if necessary, in order to be aware of everything around you. As a pedestrian, be sure to stay on the sidewalk and follow all laws and procedures to avoid being the victim of a car-pedestrian accident.
Germs and Illness
Lastly, the days following Halloween are also notorious for being sick days. From too much candy, bad candy, or spreading sick germs with friends, there is a good chance that if you encountered a fortune-teller on Halloween they would tell you that a trip to the doctor is in your future. Fortunately, if you have adequate health insurance your policy should cover the cost of your doctor visit minus the deductible, and hopefully have a prescription program for any medicine you or your family may require.
Although Halloween may bring some hazards, don’t let the potential for an accident keep you from enjoying your Halloween. Take a few safety precautions and make sure you’re adequately covered insurance-wise for the common possible accidents that can happen on Halloween. Then, you can enjoy your candy in peace and safety this October 31st!