Ann Harkins: Hi! I am Ann Harkins, President and CEO of the National Crime Prevention Council, home of McGruff the Crime Dog. I want to talk to you today about un-haunting your house and neighborhood on Halloween. Haunted houses and other scary things that go bump in the night can give kids a fright or be very entertaining.
If you are like me, you want to welcome trick-or-treaters without the scary ghosts and goblins. Here are a few simple tips to welcome trick-or-treaters. Turn on your exterior lights. Use decorative Halloween lights to help light the night. Remove objects from your yard that might present a tripping hazard to visitors.
Consider happy Halloween decorations that are less gory and scary, especially for younger trick-or-treaters. Always keep lighted jack-o-lanterns and lamps far away from drapes, decorations and other flammable materials, where children or pets will be standing or walking. Speaking of pets, confine or secure your household pets, so they are safe and not spooked by the frightful sights and sounds of Halloween night.
Be sure your pets are wearing collars and proper identification tags in case they get outside. Ask your neighborhood watch or citizens group to patrol the community on Halloween, to keep trick-or-treaters safe from potential harm. Ask students from the local high school or community colleges to be helpers by watching out for ghoulish behavior or helping trick-or-treaters cross busy streets and intersections.
Encourage your neighbors to drive slowly all evening on Halloween, because you never know what strange creatures may suddenly cross your path. Adult partygoers should establish a designated driver who can get them home safely. If you see suspicious or criminal activity, please report it immediately to your local police or sheriff's department.
Let's make sure this spooking night is a safe one for everyone. Happy Halloween. Thanks for watching and if your are interested in more safety tips and some fun Halloween coloring pages and other activities for your kids, please visit our website at ncpc.