With Halloween and Londonderry Trick or Treating falling on a Thursday, Londonderry Police would like to remind everyone to have a fun and safe time. The police have released the following safety tips for a more enjoyable time by all.
Trick or Treating will be held this year on Halloween from 5 PM until 8 PM. This is an hour earlier than past years!
Plan your Halloween weekend ahead of time.
- Find out which day in your community is the official trick or treat day/evening. Some communities will declare Saturday October 26, Sunday October 27, or Thursday October 31 (or all of those nights) as trick or treating nights.
- You have a number of choices for both weekend days and evenings.
- You can take your children to a sponsored event, or more than one event. Churches, shopping centers and malls, city parks and recreation departments, public libraries and schools can all be sponsors of trick or treat events this weekend.
- You can do traditional house to house trick or treating.
- You can host a Halloween party so the kids have a safe place to be. A video, apple cider, hot chocolate and pumpkins can go a long way in keeping kids safe.
Plan your trick or treating route.
- If you live in an established child-oriented neighborhood, then you probably already have your route planned.
- If you’re not certain what trick or treating route might be best, ask your neighbors. People who walk their dogs or jog can often tell you exactly where the safe, child-oriented neighborhoods are.
Make sure your children are costumed for safety.
- It’s really important for each child to have glow bands or sticks, or reflective tape and flashlights so they can be seen in the dark.
- We suggest you design their “lighting” so you can easily identify them, since we know kids tend to race around in the dark on this festive night. You may want to create a special pattern with reflective tape for the back of their costumes, or have a certain combination of glow band colors for children under your care.
Be visible and present for the children throughout the Halloween experience.
- Follow your children around, whether they like it or not.
- When the children knock on the door to get a treat, stand behind them on the porch. That way the kids are free to enjoy themselves, and the person opening the door can clearly see an adult is caring for these children.
- We recommend you remain just as present and just as vigilant at sponsored events. All sorts of people attend these events, and occasionally someone who is up-to-no-good will attend as well.
Prepare your children for Halloween safety.
- Provide each child with a wristband with your name and cell phone number. Or, write this information on a piece of paper and place it in each child’s pocket.
- Remind them to not get near cars or into cars without your express permission.
- Remind them of who they can ask for help if they get lost.
- Remind them of the 4 adult behaviors to be alarmed about, and how to respond.
- “If any adult or older kid offers you anything without asking me, step way back, yell, ‘NO!’, run away, and tell.” (This applies to candy, pets, treats, job offers, photographs, rides on motorcycles, etc.)
- “If any adult or older kid asks for your help without asking me first, step way back, yell ‘NO!’, run away and tell.” (This applies to mailing a letter, picking something up for an injured person, approaching a car to give directions, doing yard work, looking for a lost puppy, etc.)
- “If any adult or old kid asks you to keep a secret, step way back, yell ‘NO!’, run away, and tell.”
- “If any adult or older kid touches your private parts (parts covered by a swim suit) or asks you to touch your private parts or somebody else’s, step way back, yell ‘NO!’, run away and tell.”