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Driving tips for avoiding pedestrian accidents on Halloween

You know to choose a safe costume for your kids -- one that is not made of dark, constricting fabric that allows for visibility -- but are you focused on Halloween's other safety issues? Pedestrian accidents are serious matters during the holiday season, and Halloween is one of the deadliest times of the year for Connecticut kids. Parents who get behind the wheel to transport their children for holiday parties have a responsibility to take extra care when driving on this pedestrian-heavy evening.

Most Halloween accidents occur between 4 p.m. and midnight, when all ages of revelers take to the streets for annual trick-or-treating. Children are in danger because they do not always pay close attention to the traffic surrounding them -- they are often distracted by their hauls of candy or talking with their friends. In the later hours, young adults tend to attend holiday parties that leave them inebriated and in costumes with poor visibility, which can also increase their risk of pedestrian accidents.

If you are intending to drive during the Halloween holiday, make sure that you are following these simple tips. First, do not get behind the wheel if you have had any alcohol. Driving drunk is one of the major causes of accidents year-round, but the risk dramatically increases on Halloween. Next, try to take direct routes to your holiday events -- do not take shortcuts through residential areas. The less vehicle traffic in neighborhoods on Halloween, the safer everyone will be. Finally, consider driving about 10 mph below the speed limit, especially in heavily populated areas. These choices will all help reduce your crash risk.

Although we try to take preventive measures, pedestrian accidents still happen on Halloween. Children and adults who have been the victims of a crash may be entitled to financial compensation for their medical expenses, particularly if their accident was caused by a drunk driver. Prevention is an important step, but victims should realize that they do have rights in civil court against the negligent driver who caused their serious injuries.

Source: The Car Connection, "Keep Halloween Safe: Driving Tips For Parents," Suzanne Kane, accessed Oct. 28, 2015

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