With Halloween approaching, Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service have issued a safety warning advising people to watch what they’re wearing this holiday season.
According to the authorities, many Halloween costumes are classified as toys rather than items of clothing, and can pose as a potential fire hazard, with many of the costumes being sold in stores have not undergone such intense safety checks as regular items of clothing.
It’s recommended that when you search for costumes, you check the label for the words ‘this garment has undergone additional safety testing for flammability’, to ensure your costume is safe.
If you are preparing for the festivities this weekend, here are seven spooky suggestions to keep you from being tricked this Halloween:
- Use a battery-operated candle or glow-stick in your jack-o-lantern. When using a candle, use extreme caution! Place lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn and out of the way of trick-or-treaters, doorsteps or walkways. Make sure to watch children at all times when near lit candles.
- Lots of spooky costumes include long flowing fake hair or plastic capes that blow in the wind. Though these items look great, they can be hazardous so stay away from naked flames.
- When buying costumes for children or young people, try to check the label and be sure to buy fire retardant outfits.
- Scary costume masks for children or young people can often be too big; be sure that children can see clearly out of masks. Consider widening the holes in masks so that they can see more easily.
- Decorating the house and garden with candles and lanterns is part of the Halloween fun, but try and keep small children and pets away from any open flames.
- Before the celebrations begin, have some fun with children by teaching them how to stop, drop and roll. Help them be prepared for anything catching on fire.
- Transforming the home into a house of horrors isn’t an easy task. Make sure that all exits are clear of decorations. Don’t forget to check that all smoke alarms in the home are working.
Stewart Edgar, chief fire officer at Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service said: “There is always a lot of excitement around Halloween. We don’t want to stop people enjoying themselves, but we would ask that everyone takes extra care to make sure Halloween is safe, as well as fun.”
Cllr Nigel Moor, cabinet member for fire, planning and infrastructure, said: “If you’re out trick-or-treating this weekend make sure to follow Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service safety suggestions. I would like everyone to enjoy Halloween as safely as possible. I’d urge people to be careful of how they dress on Halloween.”