LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Officials Friday were reminding parents and motorists of the potential safety hazards during Halloween.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2011, 44 percent of all highway fatalities nationwide during the Halloween period involved a person driving under the influence.

  • Motorists, partygoers and hosts were encouraged to take the following precautions:
  • Designate a sober driver or a sober friend to drive you home.  Also, save the number of a cab company in your phone before heading out for the night.
  • Avoid driving through residential areas where trick-or-treaters are likely to be present.
  • Turn on your headlights to make yourself more visible – even in daylight.
  • Obey all traffic signs, signals and laws.  The risk of killing a pedestrian increase even with just a small increase in speed.  A pedestrian is nearly twice as likely to be killed when hit by a car going 30 miles per hour (mph) compared to one traveling at 25 mph.
  • Party hosts should offer non-alcoholic drinks and plenty of food for their guests.  Another great idea is to have designated drivers available for your guests.  Remember, hosts should never allow a guest to leave the party drunk and drive any from your party.

Parents trick-or-treating with young children were recommended the following tips:

  • Plan the route ahead of time, try and aim for well-lit streets, avoid high traffic areas and busy streets.
  • Choose costumes that make it easy for your kids to walk and be seen by drivers – light colored costumes are the best choice.
  • For darker-colored costumes, use retro-reflective tape to help make your child well-seen by drivers.  Be creative in applying the tape to make it fun and easy to be seen.
  • Masks can sometimes obstruct a child’s path of vision, so make sure that when crossing the street they remove it or consider using makeup instead of a mask for added safety.
  • It’s best to trick-or-treat when it’s still light outside, but if you find yourselves out after dark carry a flashlight so that trick-or-treaters can see and so that drivers can see them.
  • Don’t run! Always walk and make sure the kids do too.
  • Cross only at corners and never cross between parked cars or in the middle of a block.
  • Wait until you get home to sort, check and eat treats. Even if you’re not behind the wheel, it is still important to remember to remain alert when near roads and busy areas.
  • Remember, even if you see a car, they may not be able to see you or your child until it’s too late.

The LAPD also encouraged anyone to report drunk drivers by calling 911.

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