WILLMAR -- Officials from the state Departments of Public Safety and Transportation urge drivers to be particularly mindful to scan the streets and intersections for children and their parents who are out trick or treating this afternoon and evening.
Halloween marks the end of the historically deadliest month for pedestrians in the state. According to Department of Public Safety statistics, October was the deadliest month for pedestrians from 2007 to 2011, followed by December and November.
Preliminary data show that 27 pedestrians to date have been killed on Minnesota roads in 2012, compared to 22 at this time in 2011. This includes two pedestrian fatalities so far in October 2012, compared to six in October 2011, seven in October 2010 and five in October 2009.
The Department of Public Safety offers these Halloween safety tips for drivers: slow down in residential neighborhoods and school zones, scan the road and sides of the road ahead for pedestrians, look carefully behind your vehicle, especially for small children, before backing up and avoid distractions -- put away the cell phones.
There are some Halloween safety tips for parents and children: make eye contact with drivers and ensure they see you and will stop before stepping into the road, cross the street in well-lit areas, wear bright-colored clothing and reflective material or carry a flashlight, cross streets at corners, not mid-block and walk on sidewalks or pathways. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible.
-- Staff reports