Police stress caution amid Halloween fun
Officers say to employ sober drivers, monitor noise levels
Published: Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 23:10
To keep people in Bryan-College Station safe for Halloween, police departments sent out tips regarding costumes, parties and alcohol consumption to raise awareness of safety hazards particular to the holiday.
Kelley McKethan, public information officer for the Bryan Police Department, said the police departments are encouraging trick-or-treating between 6-8 p.m. so police officers can focus their resources on areas of need. While more people will be out after dark, McKethan said there hasn’t been a notable increase in accidents or incidents on Halloween in the past.
Lt. Allan Baron of the University Police Department said while Halloween safety focuses mainly on trick-or-treaters, college students should also exercise caution.
“Dealing with Northgate in general, if students plan to drink they need to have someone they can trust to be sober and get them safely home,” Baron said.
With the sun setting sooner every day, college students in dark costumes can put themselves in risky situations, especially when walking along roads or in poorly lit areas. Baron said students are encouraged to incorporate some reflective material to their costume or find a way to help make drivers aware of their presence.
“If they’re walking after dark, students need to make sure their outfits are visible so they can be seen by passing vehicles,” Baron said. “While our main focus with costumes is for kids, everyone should be cautious of open flames and if their costumes include knives, guns or swords they need to be cardboard weapons to avoid accidental injury.”
Masks are also a problem, especially for convenience store owners. Lt. Chuck Fleeger, public information officer for the College Station Police Department, said students should remove masks when entering a convenience store and people should not drive with masks on.
“Steer away from masks that cover the whole face,” Fleeger said. “They can put people on edge. People with masks should be mindful when they go into convenience stores. They’re out to have a good time, but masks can put store clerks on edge.”
Halloween parties can also create issues for police officers. Baron said students should try to keep the number of people at a party to a minimum and keep noise levels down to be respectful of neighbors who may not be partying on a Thursday Halloween.
“Students who are hosting parties need to make sure that if they are providing alcohol, the people partaking in drinking are of legal age,” Baron said.
CARPOOL, the campus organization that provides rides home for students, will be in operation on Halloween night.