Make sure Halloween costumes aren’t a fire hazard.
Do the same with decorations.
And leave fireworks to professionals.
Those tips are courtesy of the Township of Langley Fire Department, which is urging residents to prevent fires or injuries during trick-or-treating.
Public Fire and Life Safety Educator Krista Barton says when choosing a costume, stay away from billowing or long trailing fabric that can get snagged or caught, cause tripping, or come in contact with sources of heat. If wearing a mask, make sure the eye holes are large enough to see out of. Children who are trick or treating should carry flashlights or use lighting or glow sticks as part of their costumes to enhance their visibility.
Decorations such as dried flowers, cornstalks, and crepe papers are highly flammable and should be kept well away from open flames, candles, and heat sources like light bulbs.
To ensure your Jack-O-lantern doesn’t pose a fire hazard, use a flashlight or battery-operated candle.
And if you do use a real candle, make sure children are watched at all times when candles are lit, use long fireplace-style matches or a utility lighter to ignite the candle and keep lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn as well as visiting trick or treaters using walkways and yards.
Remember to keep all exits clear of decorations so that nothing blocks escape routes.
Tell children to stay away from open flames and make sure they know to stop, drop, and roll if their clothing catches fire.
Have kids practice by stopping immediately, dropping to the ground, covering their face with their hands, and rolling over and over to put the flames out.
Each Halloween, thousands of people — usually children and teenagers between the ages of five and 14 — are injured by fireworks.
Even sparklers have the potential to do great damage. The tip of a sparkler burns at a temperature of more than 648 degrees Celsius, hot enough to cause third degree burns.
“The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to leave them to the professionals and attend a public display,” said Barton.
Children should never pick up leftover fireworks after a display, as they may still be active, she added.
In the Township of Langley, people wishing to buy, possess, move, or set off fireworks must be 18 years of age or older, be certified as a fireworks supervisor by the Explosive Regulatory Division of Natural Resources Canada, and apply for a public fireworks event permit from the Township fire department.
The permit requires applicants to have a minimum clear area of 30 metres by 30 metres (100 by 100 feet), which means most suburban residential lots are too small to meet the required safety clearances.
A $5 million comprehensive general liability insurance policy is also required.
For more information, visit tol.ca/fireworks.