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Every year, Halloween decorations, costumes and parties seemingly become more elaborate and outrageous. While the season may thrill trick-or-treaters, Halloween season can sometimes lead to dangerous and tragic situations. National data from the U.S. Fire Administration shows 10,300 fires typically occur during the three-day period around Halloween, causing about 25 deaths, 125 injuries and $83 million in property loss.
“Various locations in our area host Trunk or Treat events to keep our children in safe environments, so we urge our community to remember fire safety during Halloween”, said Assistant Chief Jack Spurgeon. “Everyone needs to balance fun with safety during Halloween”.
Keep Halloween safe with a few fire safety tips:• Choose a costume without long trailing fabric. This can cause a child to trip or may touch flames in jack-o’-lanterns or other decorations.• If you make your own costume, use materials that won’t catch on fire easily if they come in contact with heat or flame.• If your children wear masks, make sure eyeholes are large enough to allow unobstructed views.• Dried flowers, cornstalks and crepe paper are highly flammable. Keep these and other decorations well away from all open flames and heat sources, including light bulbs and heaters.• It is safest to use a flashlight, glow stick or battery-operated candles in a jack-o-lantern. If you use a flame candle, use extreme caution and keep them well attended at all times. When lighting candles inside jack-o-lanterns, use long fireplace matches or a long-nozzled candle lighter. Be sure to place lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn and far enough out of the way of trick-or-treaters and such high-traffic areas as doorsteps, walkways and yards.• Remember to keep exits clear of decorations, so nothing blocks escape routes. • Tell children to stay away from open flames. Be sure they know how to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire. (Have them practice stopping immediately, dropping to the ground, covering their faces with their hands, and rolling over and over.)• Use flashlights or other battery-operated lights as alternatives to candles or torch lights when decorating walkways and yards. They are much safer for trick-or-treaters, whose costumes may brush against the lighting. • When attending a Halloween party, look for ways out of the home/venue and plan how you would get out in an emergency.• If you have a Halloween party, check for cigarettes under furniture cushions and in areas where people might have smoked, before you go to bed.
Bristol TN Fire Rescue proudly partners with the Unites States Fire Administration’s fire prevention initiative, “Fire Is Everyone’s Fight”, and promotes fire safety through a myriad of programs year round. For more tips on Halloween Safety and Home Fire Safety, contact Assistant Chief Jack Spurgeon at (423) 989-5701.