Be safe on Halloween
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THP Urges Drivers to Make Right Choices while Celebrating the Holiday

NASHVILLE - This Halloween, The Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) is reminding Tennesseans to have an alternative way of getting home after Halloween festivities. In 2014, Tennessee experienced one fatal traffic crash during the Halloween enforcement period. That's why THP is urging all motorists to drive cautiously, buckle up, don't text and drive, and never drink and drive this Halloween.

"If you want to stay safe this Halloween then make a plan to get home safely if you have been drinking," Colonel Tracy Trott said. "Choosing a designated driver can mean the difference between life and death. There are multiple driving services available that can provide a sober ride home as well. Make the safe choice and the right choice."

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 43 percent of all people nationwide killed in motor vehicle crashes on Halloween night (6:00 p.m. October 31st - 5:59 a.m. November 1st) from 2009 to 2013 were in crashes involving a drunk driver. On Halloween night alone, 119 lost their lives over that same period. Children out trick-or-treating and the parents accompanying them are also at risk. On Halloween night (2009 - 2013), 19 percent of fatal pedestrian crashes involved a drunk driver.

So far in 2015, there have been 154 alcohol-related vehicular fatalities compared to 201 this time last year. The percent decrease of alcohol-related fatalities from 2014 to 2015 is 30.5%. As of October 28th, there have been 79 pedestrian fatalities in Tennessee compared to 68 pedestrian deaths in 2014.

This weekend marks the end of daylight savings time and setting clocks back one hour. Therefore, Halloween trick-or-treaters and party goers will feel as if they have gained an extra hour to enjoy their festivities. Make safe choices during this Halloween period.

Below are tips for parents, children and motorists to keep in mind before heading out this Halloween.


Tips for Motorists

  • Slow down. Watch for children walking on roads, medians and curbs.
  • Be extra alert when pulling in and out of driveways.
  • Be especially alert for children darting out from between parked vehicles and from behind bushes and shrubs. They're excited and may not be paying attention.
  • Do not pass other vehicles that have stopped in the roadway. They could be dropping off children.
  • If you are driving to a Halloween party, put your mask on after you park the car.

Never drink and drive - tonight or any night. If you are partying, designate a driver.

Tips for Parents

  • Adults should accompany children at all times and supervise their "trick or treat" activities.
  • Teach children to "stop, look left-right-left, and listen" before they cross the street.
  • Instruct children to stay on sidewalks and to cross only at corners or crosswalks.
  • Use a flashlight and wear retro-reflective strips or patches on your clothing or costume to be more visible to motorists.
  • Be certain that the mask does not obstruct vision or hearing.
  • Ensure that costumes do not impede walking or driving ability.

Tips for Pedestrians (children and adults)

  • Require children to wear retro-reflective materials and carry a flashlight at dawn and dusk and in other low-light situations, such as rainy or foggy weather.
  • Before crossing a street, stop at the curb or edge of the road and look left, right and left again to be sure no cars are coming. Continue to check for traffic while on the street.
  • Walk - never run - from house to house or across the road.
  • Cross the street only at intersections and crosswalks.
  • When crossing at an intersection with a traffic light, be sure to watch for turning cars. Obey all pedestrian signals.
  • Walk on sidewalks whenever possible. If there are no sidewalks, walk on the left side of the street facing traffic.

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security's (www.TN.Gov/safety) mission is to serve, secure, and protect the people of Tennessee


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