Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of motor vehicle fatalities on Halloween rises an average of 30 percent when the holiday is on a weekend.
And with Halloween being on Friday this year, statewide law enforcement is adding extra patrol.
Halloween is consistently one of the top three days for pedestrian injuries and fatalities. Safety experts say parents should keep in mind that children are at greater risk as pedestrians because they are shorter and they have unreliable judgment about when and where to cross streets.
This year there is also added concern because of the holiday's timing. The Utah Department of safety says they will be adding more patrol statewide.
Mobile Watch will be saturating neighborhoods, and officers will be running several DUI blitzes along the Wasatch Front and also along the Utah Nevada border near Wendover.
Salt Lake City police spokeswoman Lara Jones says, "We don't necessarily want to say where we will be, we will just be out in force looking for those folks who are going to be out on the road. And if that is somebody out there driving around thinking, ‘Tonight I'm going to go and party and have a bit of fun,' think about a designated driver, think about calling a cab."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that children are four times more likely to be struck by a motor vehicle on Halloween than any other day of the year.
To protect you child, AAA recommends these tips to parents and drivers:
- Walk with children door to door while trick-or-treating, showing children safe places to cross the street.
- Always walk facing traffic if there are no sidewalks available.
- Wear light-colored clothing or costumes, use face paint instead of masks and only go to lit houses.
AAA also recommends that motorists slow down at least 5 mph slower than the posted speed limit because children dart from house to house, excited about candy and forget about traffic.
AAA's Tipsy Tow Program will offer a free tow for drinking drivers from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. tomorrow. Members and non-members alike can call AAA-HELP for a ride.