Halloween Safety Tips for Drivers and Homeowners
Soon, ghouls, goblins and Elsa will be at your front door. Are you prepared? We aren’t talking candy-bought, decorations-up prepared. We mean, what happens if Eleven from Stranger Things breaks her arm or your house is egged? Are you covered for that? Or will a night of tricks and treats become an expensive horror?
Pay attention when driving. Halloween brings a lot of people out for a night of trick-or-treating, so watch for them crossing the street or even darting out between parked cars. It’s fun to look at all the costumes and children enjoying the night but stay on high alert while behind the wheel.
Avoid parking in deserted areas. Vandals are less likely to do their dirty work out in the open, so park in well-populated areas whenever possible. If you’re attending a Halloween party in an unfamiliar neighborhood, ask the host for recommendations on safe places to park. Before you leave a vehicle parked in your garage, on a street or in a parking lot, remove all valuables from it, as this will help to deter thieves from wanting to break into your car.
Activate your alarm. Car alarms are loud and draw people’s attention, so use them to deter criminals.
Review your auto insurance policy. Talk to your local independent agent to see what auto coverage you have. For example, comprehensive coverage would protect against acts of vandalism like rowdy teenagers egging your vehicle, while home or renter’s insurance would cover stolen items taken from a vehicle.
Light your walkway. This can reduce the likelihood of vandalism to your home as well as increase visibility for costumed visitors who may have difficulty viewing the terrain.
Keep pets indoors. Some dogs and cats can become easily spooked by strangers or kids disguised in costumes.
Keep pets inside – or in a separate part of your home if you’re hosting a party – to keep them safe and prevent any ugly situations where a pet can bite or scratch a guest.
Install surveillance cameras. Cameras can be installed to areas of the home that are more
obstructed or away from the street and may help law enforcement identify the perpetrators.
Filing a Claim
Call the police. Filing a report provides you with an official record of any incident and, hopefully, the police will be able to track down the offender. Don’t attempt to move or clean any of the damaged items until the police arrive to document the scene and retrieve necessary information.
Take photos of the damage. Photos may act as additional evidence and provide a more permanent record of events.
Contact your insurer. Report claims to your insurance company right away.