Halloween is creeping up fast
Halloween is just around the corner, and it's no wanna-be holiday anymore: It's the second largest commercial holiday in the United States. With trick-or-treating in the evening, haunted houses and corn mazes to visit and hayrides to enjoy, there...
Halloween is just around the corner, and it's no wanna-be holiday anymore: It's the second largest commercial holiday in the United States.
With trick-or-treating in the evening, haunted houses and corn mazes to visit and hayrides to enjoy, there's a lot to do.
With a little planning, you can help make sure the holiday doesn't take a turn for the worse. Here are some tips from Paul van Gorkom, vice president of operations at AlliedBarton Security Services:
Have a safe scare at a haunted house
Haunted houses may be required to abide by fire and safety codes and may be subject to inspections before the general public is allowed to attend. Some may also be required to have a sprinkler system, early warning smoke or heat detectors, emergency lights, easy access doors, and other safety features. But regulations may not be the same in all areas and you are responsible for your own safety. To stay safe while visiting a haunted house:
- Take a flashlight with you. Even though the safety lighting might be fine for others, it may not be great for you.
- If you are going with small children, attach a glow stick to their clothing so they can be easily found in the dark.
- If there are stairs in the haunted house, be sure to use handrails and walk, do not run, up or down the stairs.
- If visiting a haunted house in a group, have a meeting place in case you get split up.
- Know where the exits are before entering the haunted house. Some attractions will provide you a map of the house so you are aware of where you are going when inside.
- Keep an adult in the front and rear of your group going through the haunted house to help monitor young children so they do not stray.
Don't get lost in the corn maze
Corn mazes are large fields of corn stalks, anywhere from a small field to more than 20 acres in size. They can be great fun if they are completed safely.
- Equip your group with flashlights and cell phones and try to stick together.
- Some mazes provide young children and groups with colored flags to wave in the air if they get lost. There are also mazes that have call boxes that will turn on a light to alert an attendant that you are lost or need assistance.
- Teach young children to not go outside of the maze's path. There may be a busy road or another unknown property beyond the corn stalks.
- Wear appropriate clothing and shoes as you will be outside. If the path is not wide, corn stalks may scratch your arms. Remember that rain can create muddy, slippery surfaces. Fallen corn stalks may also be a tripping hazard, so watch your step.
- Avoid smoking while in the maze as dry corn stalk could
easily catch fire.
By planning ahead, you can improve the chances of having a fun and avoiding problems.