KINGSPORT – The Kingsport Police Department recently released tips to help keep kids safe during Halloween.
According to a news release, The Kingsport Police Department is a strong advocate of the “Trunk or Treat” concept as a safer alternative to traditional door-to-door Trick or Treating. Rather than having costumed kids wandering along dark neighborhood streets, knocking on the doors of complete strangers, Trunk or Treat events are typically held in large parking lots and are sponsored by reputable business, churches, or other community organizations.
Officers said parking lots are usually well-lit and barricaded off, allowing only foot traffic and no vehicle traffic in the area of the event. Parked vehicles are spaced out in the parking lot allowing costumed children to go from trunk to trunk collecting candy. Furthermore, most of these events also include games, activities, and costume contests.
For those interested in attending a Trunk or Treat event this Halloween, following is a list of events that the Kingsport Police Department is aware of (although there are possibly others):
1) Saturday, Oct 24, 2015: B.A.E. Trunk or Treat at Holston Army Ammunition Plant at intersection of West Stone Drive at University Boulevard
2) Monday, Oct 26, 2015: Food City Trunk or Treat at Farmer’s Market in Downtown Kingsport (K.P.D. typically participates in this one.)
3) Wednesday, October 28, 2015: First Presbyterian Church Trunk or Treat on Church Circle
4) Wednesday, October 28, 2015: Mayfair United Methodist Church Trunk or Treat on corner of East Center Street and Prospect Street
5) Saturday, October 31, 2015: Oakwood Forest Christian Church Trunk or Treat on corner of North Eastman Road and East Sevier Avenue
6) Saturday, October 31: Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office Trunk or Treat at Sullivan County Justice Center in Blountville
While K.P.D. does not officially endorse any of the above events, officers said they want citizens to know that there are plenty of options.
For those who prefer traditional door-to-door trick or treating, K.P.D. provided these Halloween Safety Tips.
- Cross the street at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
- Look left, right, and left again when crossing, and keep looking as you cross.
- Put electronic devices down and keep heads up and walk, don’t run, across the street.
- Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
- Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible. Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.
- Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.
Trick or Treat With an Adult
- Children under the age of 12 should not be alone at night without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, they should stick to familiar areas that are well lit and trick-or-treat in groups.
Keep Costumes Both Creative and Safe
- Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.
- Choose face paint and makeup whenever possible instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.
- Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
- When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls.
Drive Extra Safely on Halloween
- Slow down and be especially alert in residential neighborhoods. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways.
- Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs.
- Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.
- Eliminate any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
- Drive slowly, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distances.
- Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. so be especially alert for kids during those hours.
Inspect Candy Before Eating
● Don’t snack! Save the treats until you get home and can inspect the candy for loose or torn wrappers. Be cautious about keeping goodies that might pose as a choking hazard.
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