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Put Safety First This Halloween

Starting date:
October 24, 2013
Posting date:
October 24, 2013
Type of communication:
Information Update
Source of recall:
Health Canada
Food Safety
General Public
Identification number:


Halloween is a fun and exciting time for kids. Parents or caregivers are encouraged to follow some important safety tips to ensure a safe celebration for everyone.

What you should do

Costumes – is yours safe?

  • Does your child want to dress like a pirate? A princess? A zombie? Choose costumes, beards and wigs labelled "flame-resistant". Nylon or heavyweight polyester costumes are best. “Flame-resistant” does not mean “fire proof”.
  • Avoid costumes with baggy sleeves or flowing skirts to minimize the risk of contact with candles and other fire sources.  Make sure that costumes are loose enough to be worn over warm clothing, but not so baggy or long that children can trip over their costumes.
  • Make sure that children do not use items that could wrap around their neck, such as scarves, boas, strings and cords.
  • Choose brightly coloured costumes that will be clearly visible to motorists. For greater visibility, incorporate reflective tape into the costume.
  • Consider using make-up and face paint. Masks can restrict breathing and/or vision. If you do choose a mask, make sure that your child can see and breathe easily.
  • Before using face paint or make-up, do a patch test to see if your child is sensitive or allergic to something in the cosmetic. Even products labelled as “hypoallergenic” can still cause allergic reactions.

Trick or Treating

  • If candy treats are not commercially wrapped, or are found in torn, damaged or loose packages, throw them out!
  • Wash your hands before opening and eating candy treats.
  • Remove any choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies or small toys from the loot bags of young children.
  • Wash fresh fruit thoroughly and cut it open before allowing a child to eat it. Inspect for holes, including small punctures and cuts, and if any, do not let children or adults eat the fruit. When in doubt – throw it out!
  • Avoid giving out treats that may contain ingredients like peanuts, milk and egg. These ingredients can cause severe reactions in individuals who have allergies or sensitivities. Parents or caregivers of children with food allergies should read labels carefully and avoid candies that do not have an ingredient list.
  • When trick-or-treating, accompany children until they are old enough to go by themselves or with their friends.

Tips for kids – be safe

  • Don’t eat any goodies until your parents see them first.
  • Stay in well-lit areas and visit homes that have their outside lights turned on. Never go inside homes or cars!
  • Walk, don’t run, from house to house and stay on the sidewalk or at the side of the road facing traffic.
  • Cross the road at the corner and look both ways before crossing the road.

Media enquiries

Health Canada
(613) 957-2983

Public enquiries


For more information

For more information about Halloween Safety, please visit the following webpages: