Hocus pocus, safety focus – top tips for a safe Halloween

Published Wednesday, 12 October, 2022 at 03:08 PM

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has conjured up some spook-tacular safety tips for Halloween lovers, big and small.

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Shannon Fentiman said items such as light up novelties, costumes, and fake blood or tattoos could be frightfully fun, provided some basic safety steps were followed.

“Light up novelties and flashing objects such as jack-o-lanterns, cauldrons, fake candles, torches and wands are often powered by button batteries. But we know the statistics on button batteries are very concerning,” the Minister said.

“In Australia one child a month is seriously injured after swallowing or inserting a button battery, with some of them sustaining lifelong or even fatal injuries.

“That’s why it’s so important when buying button battery-powered Halloween novelties that you check the battery compartment is secured with a screw or similar fastener to prevent children gaining access.

“Also check that any novelties are age appropriate and don’t pose choking hazards.

Minister Fentiman said costumes are a key part of Halloween celebrations, but if you’ll be outside, it’s vitally important to make sure they are visible.

“If you or your children will be wearing black or other dark coloured costumes for Halloween, add glow sticks or a reflective strip to your costumes and carry a torch to ensure drivers and other trick-or-treaters can see you,” Minister Fentiman said.

“And while it goes without saying to take care around open heat sources such as jack-o-lanterns and heaters, you should also check costume labels for their fire risk and choose those marked ‘flame resistant’ or ‘fire resistant’.

“If you’re completing your look with fake tattoos, face paint, makeup, or fake blood, ensure they come with ingredients labels and keep them handy throughout the night. 

“If someone in your group has an allergic reaction to a product, having a list of ingredients available for doctors can save them vital time when determining how to treat them.

For more information on Halloween safety visit the OFT website.  

If you suspect a child has swallowed or inserted a button battery, immediately call the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 for 24/7 fast, expert advice. If your child is having any difficulty breathing, contact 000.