The COVID-19 epidemic has put everyone’s ability to be adaptable to new situations to the test. We’ve had to learn how to modify on the go in a variety of situations, including job, travel, shopping, day-to-day life, and how we meet up with friends and family.
The pandemic has altered how we celebrate holidays, and it’s probable that this year’s Halloween will be different from previous years.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated on its website that “many typical Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading diseases.” “There are a number of safer and alternative ways to celebrate Halloween.”
Although children may not be able to go door-to-door collecting candy or attend a large costume party, they can still have a good time on October 31.
But don’t assume Halloween catastrophes can’t happen to you, even if the tiny devils running around your neighborhood are kind-hearted people. The holiday is filled with dangers and risks that aren’t readily apparent.
On Halloween, some insurance firms report a significant increase in vandalism and property damage claims.
Jack O’ Lantern Might Be More Than You Expected
A very brief and incomplete history of the jack o’ lantern can be found here: The name ignis fatuus comes from the Medieval Latin term ignis fatuus, which means “foolish fire.” Stingy Jack, according to Irish folklore, made a terrible deal with the devil (who always wins) and was destined to wander the Earth for eternity with only an ember from a turnip to guide him.
So, what is the story? Basically, don’t play with foolish fire like Stingy Jack. Pumpkin carving is a fun Halloween tradition. Putting an unattended flame inside a pumpkin, on the other hand, isn’t a good idea.
Especially if you use flammable decorations such as dried flowers, cornstalks, and crepe paper to surround it.
If this sounds like a cock-and-bull tale, don’t believe it. According to the most recent data from the National Fire Protection Association, there were 770 residential structure fires every year that started with Halloween decorations on average from 2016 to 2021. (NFPA).
Candles were blamed for more than a third of the fires.
While homeowners insurance covers accidental house fires, it’s definitely not what you had in mind for Halloween. To keep things eerie, the NFPA recommends using a battery-operated candle or a glow stick instead of jack o’ lanterns.
Car Thefts Have a Big Night on Halloween
If having to worry about your dogs, decorations, and unintentional fires isn’t enough, you should also be concerned about auto thieves. According to the most recent data from the National Insurance Crime Bureau, 2,191 cars were stolen on Halloween in 2019.
After New Year’s Day, Labor Day, President’s Day, and New Year’s Eve, Halloween was the fifth most popular holiday for car thefts.
However, Father Time does not always take the top spot when it comes to auto thefts. In 2017 and 2020, Halloween was the most popular holiday for auto theft. In fact, Halloween has continuously ranked in the top three NICB holidays with the most stolen cars since 2013, so expect more of the same this year.
The comprehensive insurance section of your auto insurance policy covers car thefts. Vandalism damage, such as graffiti, is also covered by comprehensive insurance. However, keep in mind that this is an optional coverage that you must add to your policy and pay for separately. If you’re not sure if you have this coverage, call your insurance agent and inquire.
Tips for Avoiding Halloween Mishaps
You can help lessen the likelihood of your Halloween ending on a bad note by taking a few preemptive precautions. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Keep your paths free of obstructions. Make sure your walkways are well-lit and free of dangers like electrical cables, garden hoses, damp leaves, snow, and decorations (like carved pumpkins).
- Make sure your railings are secure. If your home contains steps, check sure the railings are secure to avoid guests from tripping and falling.
- Make sure your pets are safe. Doorbells and crowds of costumed trick-or-treaters may frighten your pet. To avoid injuries such as dog bites and cat scratching, keep your pets away from visitors.
- Decorate with caution. Real candles, as well as other combustible items like crepe paper and cornstalks, should be avoided. Instead of a candle, consider using glow sticks or battery-operated LED lights. Make sure you don’t overload electrical outlets if you need to plug in any decorations.
- Place your car in a secure location. If you don’t have access to a garage, park in a well-lit area to lessen the risk of theft or vandalism.
Alternative Halloween Celebration
Organize a Virtual Halloween Party
One of the most enjoyable aspects of Halloween is seeing other people’s costumes. Although it may not be safe to inspect your friends’ or family members’ costumes in person this year, you may have a costume party via videoconferencing.
Send out an invitation link, encourage people to dress up, play some dance music, and throw the best virtual Halloween party your friends and family have ever seen!
Candy may be the only thing that compares to having a good Halloween costume for kids. Unfortunately, traditional trick-or-treating will not be available this year, but there are still options for getting candy.
Create a reverse trick-or-treating event by coordinating with your neighbors. Instead of traveling from house to house, kids can dress up and stand outside their homes while neighbors pass by and toss candy (similar to a parade float). Everyone maintains their social distance, and youngsters can still gather the majority of the candy they would have received if they had gone trick-or-treating.
Another socially distant candy distribution idea is trunk-or-treating. People pass out candy from their decorated vehicle during these events, which are frequently hosted in school or church parking lots.
Trunk-or-treat could even be done in your own neighborhood. Your car should be parked outside your house or at the end of your driveway. Simply hand out the candy to the trick-or-treaters instead of allowing them to reach into the bowl.
If you plan to distribute candy, bring hand sanitizer and a mask to the trunk-or-treat.
Regardless of the epidemic, no one can stop us from celebrating Halloween, albeit we must prioritize safety not just in terms of health, but also in terms of the concrete items we have, whether it is an outdoor or indoor event.
Whatever preparations we need to make only to celebrate this Halloween season, we must plan ahead of time to determine what is required. If we fill up the gaps now, we will have a fantastic Halloween celebration this year.