Halloween is here: Be safe on the streets | SierraSun.com

Halloween is here: Be safe on the streets

Sierra Countis
Sierra Sun

Arrgh captain! Shiver me timbers! Tonight streets will be filled with a sea of Johnny Depp-inspired pirates, mighty superheros, magical witches, and fairy princesses, all in the spirit of Halloween.

Youngsters will be out trick or treating up and down local neighborhood streets to collect all the candy their bags can hold.

With all this in mind, ensuring children are safe this Halloween is a priority for the Truckee Police Department and other local law enforcement, said Lt. Randy Fenn.

The biggest threat to a child’s safety on Halloween is traffic, he said.

“The supervision of mom or dad or an adult is key,” Fenn said.

Accidents can occur when adults aren’t able to keep track of a large group of children, so make sure to have enough chaperones while out trick or treating, he said.

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Carrying flashlights and wearing something reflective on Halloween costumes will make holiday revelers more visible to oncoming traffic, Fenn said.

Fenn said there will be an increased number of officers patrolling the Gateway neighborhood and downtown Truckee.

Adults should also be aware of the dangers of drinking and driving ” especially on Halloween, Fenn said.

“Think about the possibility of an even greater tragedy of drunk driving with kids out,” Fenn said.

Fenn said there is no Halloween exemption for weapon laws for those in costume. Halloween masks should be taken off before entering a store, he said.

Parents also need to supervise what’s going into their children’s trick or treat bags. Youngsters shouldn’t accept homemade treats or any unwrapped candy, said Dr. Sandra Carter, director of health promotions at Tahoe Forest Center for Health and Sports Performance.

Youngsters should eat a healthy meal before leaving the house to go trick or treating. A full belly will prevent children from snacking on treats while they walk door to door, Carter said.

Halloween candy is all about moderation, she said.

Sugar and chocolate are stimulants which can alter a child’s behavior, usually resulting in a sugar high, she said.

Encourage youngsters to munch on wholesome, nutritional foods such as fruits and vegetables as well, Carter said, and make sure they brush their teeth.

Halloween is the sixth largest spending holiday in the country, with consumers spending approximately $4.96 billion on bags of candy, costumes, and decorations, according to the National Retail Federation’s 2006 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey.

– Businesses in the Gateway shopping center, where Safeway is located, on Donner Pass Road in Truckee will be passing out candy from 5 to 9 p.m. Then, trick-or-treaters can head over to the Gateway neighborhood. Volunteers will be helping with traffic control.

– Children can collect some tasty sweets in Kings Beach on Brassie Avenue and Midiron Avenue near Old Brockway Golf Course.

– Preschool to fifth grade students are invited to trick or treat from 4 to 6 p.m. at Heritage Plaza next to Syd’s Bagelry in Tahoe City.