Monday, 03 October 2016 GMT
Author: Staveley Head
The days have drawn in, the temperature has dropped and autumn leaves scatter the ground. Halloween and Bonfire Night are just around the corner and what better way to celebrate than to gather all the family and friends, wrap up warm and head out trick or treating or go to a fireworks display.
Halloween is a night full of excitement, magic and buckets of sweets for many. With hordes of spookily dressed children taking to the streets out to get some sugary treats and pumpkins being carved, what’s not to like? Well according to Aviva, not everyone gets into the spirit of things in such a pleasant manner, with malicious damage rising an incredible 160%! Here are some tips to help you enjoy Halloween this autumn.
Trick or Treating
Trick or treating is great fun for children, the excitement of getting dressed up as a spooky character and visiting neighbours and friends and hopefully collecting some sweets on the way. Although it is great fun there are a few things to keep in mind whilst out and about:
- Make sure children are accompanied by an adult.
- Stay within your local vicinity and only knock on doors of people you know.
- Never enter a stranger’s house.
- Wear reflective clothing and take a torch or glowsticks with you.
- Check sweets before letting children eat them (never eat unwrapped or opened sweets).
Nothing says Halloween quite like a creatively carved pumpkin, they are an essential decoration. No matter what kind of design you are planning it is always important to be safe:
- Don’t allow young children to carve the pumpkin
- Make sure you are working in a clean well lit area
- Carve the pattern before you scoop the inside out, this will take away the temptation of putting your hand inside and accidently cutting yourself
- If you cut your hand or finger, rinse it under cold water to get any debris out and apply pressure; after the bleeding has stopped put a plaster on the cut.
- Seek medical help if the cut is deep or won’t stop bleeding.
- Alternatively you can purchase polystyrene pumpkins that come with plastic tools so you can carve with the little ones.
What better excuse is there than Halloween to get the fancy dress out and have a spooky night out with your friends? Here are a few ways of having a fun time, trouble free:
- Plan your night out and know how you are getting home.
- Make sure you take your mobile phone with you and that it’s fully charged.
- Stay in a group; don’t go off on your own or with strangers.
- Be sensible with the amount of alcohol you drink.
- Make sure you have enough money if you are taking a taxi, train or bus home.
If you’re planning on having your own bonfire and fireworks this year it is bound to be a magical night, but not without risk. According to Aviva fire claims are 60% higher on Bonfire Night, and a typical house fire can cause about £12,800 of damage. As providers of home insurance we understand how important it is to keep your loved ones and home safe. Here are some tips to help make sure you have a fabulous, but safe Bonfire Night.
With spectacular colours and mesmerising patterns, fireworks surely are the show piece of Bonfire Night. If you’re in charge of the display here are a few things to keep in mind:
- If you’ve bought fireworks in advance store them in a cool, dry place in a metal box away from fire and out of reach of children.
- Before setting up your fireworks it is important to check the wind speed and direction. Avoid displays if the wind is blowing towards spectators or your home.
- Make sure all pets are kept indoors.
- If you’re in charge of lighting the fireworks keep off the booze!
- When it comes to lighting your fireworks make sure that they are a safe distance away from your home and spectators. Also make sure they have the correct support so they don’t tip over.
- Keep unused fireworks a safe distance away, in a metal box with the lid closed.
- Catherine wheels require different support; don’t attach them to your gate, shed or fence! A stake or fence post is ideal support.
- Have a bucket of water or hose close by in case of fires.
The glowing warmth and dancing flames of a bonfire all add to the atmosphere. If you are planning on having a bonfire in your garden here are some of our safety tips:
- Don’t build the bonfire close to your home, shed, fences, hedges or trees. This will prevent the fire spreading.
- Even if it is tempting don’t use petrol or any other flammables to help light the fire. This can cause the fire to spread or even an explosion.
- Once the fire is lit make sure you keep an eye on it and never leave it unattended.
- Once the bonfire has finished pour water over the embers.
Sparklers are great fun, but you must be careful when using them.
- Wear gloves when using sparklers.
- Make sure children with sparklers are supervised at all times. Teach them to hold the sparkler at arm’s length and not to run with them or wave them around in a crowded space.
- Sparklers should always be disposed of properly-don’t just throw them on the floor. Have a bucket of water ready to place the sparklers in hot end first.
No matter what you get up to this autumn, we hope that you have a happy and safe Halloween and Bonfire night.