A Halloween Horror Story
October 13, 2021
BY: Lesnevich, Marzano-Lesnevich, O'Cathain & O'Cathain
What’s the scariest Halloween horror story you can think of? Is it Michael Myers wielding his killer knife on the residents of Haddonfield in the Halloween franchise? The Headless Horseman in Ichabod Crane’s Sleepy Hollow? Or just running out of candy for the trick-or-treater at your own front door?
No, of course not. It’s— God forbid— your child being struck by a car while trick-or-treating on Halloween night.
For many of us the night of October 31st conjures images of children in suburbia, all dressed up as witches, superheroes or the latest Disney princess, trick-or-treating with their friends while we’re at home, answering the doorbell or cooking dinner. (Or, perhaps you’re there, as the adult chaperone, in costume or not.)
What if one of those little trick-or-treaters is, unfortunately, hit by an automobile? There are several things you should immediately do:
- If necessary, seek medical attention. Whether you’re on the scene or you receive a frantic cellphone call from your child’s friend, the first and most important thing is to ascertain if your child needs medical assistance after this automobile accident. Remember, better to be cautious when addressing medical needs.
- Contact the police. Whether the responsible adult driver has stayed on the scene of the accident to call 911 or the driver has unfortunately fled the scene in a child pedestrian hit-and-run, you’ll want to contact the police and let them know of the accident. While this isn’t the Halloween night anybody imagined, you’ll want to file a proper police report so there’s a full paper trail of the accident on record.
- Consult a personal injury lawyer. Whether for medical expenses, pain and suffering, disability or even, occasionally, lost wages, chances are high you’ll want to retain a personal injury lawyer to deal with the driver’s insurance company with regards to your child pedestrian accident case. As you may know, your attorney will only receive compensation if you receive monetary damages for your child’s accident, and you’ll want an attorney to fight the insurance company for what you and your child are entitled to. Plus, it’s important to remember that the law doesn’t hold a minor, your child, to the same responsibility as the adult driver of the automobile. If anything, especially on a night such as Halloween, the burden of safe driving rests on the adult driver, to drive slowly, observe all traffic signs and crosswalks, and generally be on the lookout for costumed trick-or-treaters.
Of course, the best thing is if your child makes it home safely after trick-or-treating for dinner, candy, a maybe a classic Halloween episode of Modern Family. So what can you do beforehand to ensure a safe trick-or-treating experience for your children?
- Add some reflective tape to a costume or trick-or-treat bag. No, the kiddos may not like it, but help drivers see your child by simply by affixing reflective light tape on them.
- Equip everyone with a small flashlight. The most dangerous part of trick-or-treating is that it’s often at night, so give everyone in the group a small pen flashlight to help them light their way.
- Use crosswalks and observe all walk/don’t walk signs. Everyone wants to get to the house with best candy as soon as possible, but it’s best to use crosswalks and other pedestrian safety measures designed to reduce the possibility of accidents.
- Remove your mask while walking. Whether it’s too make sure you don’t trip on a sidewalk or accidentally place yourself in a moving car’s purview, it’s probably best for youngsters to remove their costume mask while they’re walking. (Plenty of time to put it on and complete the effect before they ring the doorbell!)
- Trick-or-treat in groups. It’s easier, of course, for drivers to recognize a whole bunch of ghouls, ghosts and goblins than a single trick-or-treater. Make sure your favorite trick-or-treater is with friends (and potentially an adult chaperone) if possible!
The important thing is for our trick-or-treaters to have a safe, happy and healthy Halloween— and of course to come home with some good candy and good memories!
Everyone at Lesnevich, Marano-Lesnevich, O’Cathain & O’Cathain, LLC wishes you a spooktacular Halloween! Of course accidents happen. If you need help, please call: (201) 488-1161 or learn more at: https://lmllawyers.com/personal-injury-law/