Fire brigades prepare for Halloween; Motorists urged to be aware of trick-or-treaters

Fire brigades prepare for Halloween; Motorists urged to be aware of trick-or-treaters

The country's fire brigades are preparing for their busiest night of the year.

People are being urged to head to council-run events rather than illegal bonfires this Halloween.

Dublin Fire Brigade operators took more than 900 calls this day last year.

"We still had 65 bonfires which we attended last year. It is down on the year before and the year before that," said Dennis Keeley, Chief Fire Officer.

"What we are seeing though, is an increase in our ambulance and emergency responses to medical emergencies.

"So the message we want to get out this year is to ensure that children are well supervised [and] that people stand well back from bonfires.

"And really the big message is to encourage people to attend the organised events."

Meanwhile, motorists are being urged to be on the lookout for trick-or-treaters this evening.

AA Ireland called on motorists to be safety conscious, particularly when driving through estates and cul-de-sacs where a high number of children could be trick-or-treating.

They called on drivers to be aware of the darker conditions, calling for them to reduce their speed.

They said motorists should "be on the lookout for children who could step onto the street without looking, pedestrians who are accompanying their children while trick-or-treating, and animals who could be startled by fireworks."

AA Ireland offered the following tips to help people this Halloween:

  • Motorists need to reduce speed and drive with extreme caution particularly in areas where children are likely to be present
  • Children under the age of 12 should be accompanied by an adult
  • Try and keep your pet inside the quietest part of your house and away from candles. A frightened St Bernard could wreak havoc inside your house!
  • Before engaging in Halloween festivities, parents should have a talk with children about the rules of the road, remembering to: only cross at corners of the road and not between parked cars, obey traffic lights as well as stop, look and listen before proceeding to cross the road
  • Give children a torch or a glow light to ensure maximum visibility
  • Parents will need to be extra diligent as small children will be caught up in the excitement of the festivities.

Pet owners are also being encouraged to keep their animals locked indoors to keep them safe this evening.

The DSPCA said Halloween brings an influx in strays and injured animals.

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