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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Avoid a Monster Mash on the Roads this Halloween

MoDOT Urges Drivers and Pedestrians to Stay Alert for Each Other

JEFFERSON CITY – As little ghosts and goblins embark on their quests for candy this weekend, the Missouri Department of Transportation is urging trick-or-treaters and drivers to stay alert for each other.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, children are three times more likely to be struck and killed by a car on Halloween than any other day of the year. And since 2015, Missouri has seen more fatal crashes involving pedestrians in October than any other month.

“In dark conditions with an influx of pedestrians, many of them children, Halloween night has the potential to result in increased risks,” said Jon Nelson, MoDOT’s assistant to the state highway safety and traffic engineer. “Drivers and pedestrians both have important roles to play to keep each other safe and avoid a real tragedy.”

Drivers should avoid distractions so they’re aware of any pedestrians walking on or near the roadways. Be especially cautious in the dark, as children in dark clothing may be difficult to see. Drivers should also slow down in areas where pedestrians are likely to be or where sight distances are limited, and never drive impaired.

Pedestrians should also make smart choices, such as bringing a flashlight to make yourself as visible as possible to passing motorists. Trick-or-treaters should always walk on a sidewalk wherever one is available. If one isn’t available, walk facing traffic and as far to the side as safely possible. Pedestrians should also cross with a traffic signal and crosswalk whenever they are available. Make sure traffic has stopped or passed before you begin to cross the road. And like drivers, pedestrians should also avoid distractions so you are alert to the traffic around you.

Missouri’s strategic highway safety plan, Show-Me Zero, identifies four key focus areas - distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding and buckling up - to help eliminate traffic deaths. For more information on the Show-Me Zero plan and to learn how all Missourians can help make the roadways safer, visit www.savemolives.com.