December 4, 2023

For pedestrians, be seen. For drivers, slow down and keep your eyes open.

It could be a wet, dreary Halloween this year.

There’s currently a 60 per cent chance of rain for tomorrow night (Oct. 31), according to Environment Canada, following periods of downpour throughout the day in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody.

And with the continuation of another possible atmospheric river event, mixed with the colder season of fall, comes earlier darkness and that may make it difficult for trick-or-treaters to be seen.

According to ICBC, about 190 people have been injured in 530 crashes on Oct. 31 in the Lower Mainland from the last five years (2017-2021).

Coquitlam RCMP are encouraging both pedestrians and drivers to be extra cautious out of the roads for Halloween as everyone’s safety should be the number-one priority.

“Halloween is a busy time for kids of all ages,” said spokesperson Cpl. Alexa Hodgins in a news release. “Together we can ensure that this Halloween is happy, safe and fun.”

Safety tips from Mounties include the following:

Plan a safe and scary look

  • Ensure your costume is visible in the dark

    • You can add reflective tape or arm bands to increase visibility
    • Flashlights and glow sticks can be great costume accessories and can keep kids visible to motorists

  • If your costume involves a mask, test it our prior to Halloween to ensure that you can see properly

    • If possible, use face paint instead

  • Ensure your costume is made of flame-retardant material
  • Make sure your costume fits well to avoid falls or stumbles

Be street smart

  • Plan your trick-or-treating route

    • Be aware of any hazards, like poorly-lit areas

  • Children trick-or-treating without an adult?

    • Ensure they go with a buddy
    • Discuss the route ahead of time to avoid getting lost

  • Ensure that everyone knows where they can find help if needed

    • ie.) police station, fire station or any other well-known public place

  • Stay on the sidewalks

    • If there is no sidewalk, walk on the left-hand side of the street facing traffic
    • Remember to cross at a designated crossing

  • Never enter a house, and only accept treats at the front door

For drivers…

  • Avoid driving in residential neighbourhoods, if possible
  • Slow down and be extra cautious

    • Expect that trick-or-treaters may forget to look both ways before rushing across the street or a driveway in their search for treats

  • Watch for people using crosswalks
  • Do not drive impaired
  • Ensure your costume does not interfere with the safe operation of the motor vehicle

    • Costumes should not restrict movement, impede vision or prevent anyone in the vehicle from buckling up

  • Ensure your vehicle lights are on as soon as dusk hits

For pet-owners…

  • Keep pets inside

    • Loud noises and costumed strangers can be alarming for pets, potentially causing them to run off, jump out open windows or dart into traffic

  • Make sure your dog or cat wears identification and has permanent ID in case they run off

    • ie.) tattoo or microchip 

  • Keep human treats out of your pet’s reach

    • Candy is unhealthy for pets, particularly chocolate, which can be toxic

  • Don’t take your pet with you trick-or-treating.

    • The strange sights, sounds and activity can cause a normally friendly dog to bite if it feels scared or threatened

  • Be mindful that dressing your pet in a costume may make them uncomfortable or inhibit their ability to communicate

    • This may cause dogs to display fearful or aggressive behaviour or be subjected to aggressive behaviour from other dogs


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *