26 October 2016 - Ambulance Service Urges Fun-Seekers to Have a Safe Halloween Halloween is known to be a time for fun and mischief but for North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) it’s particularly eerie as they often see a surge in 999 calls. Last year, the Trust saw a 13% increase in calls on Halloween or ‘Mischief Night’ compared to the same time the week before, attending numerous spooky incidents including a patient choking on a set of plastic vampire fangs! In order to avoid any gruesome injuries, NWAS is urging parents to use the following safety advice whilst enjoying the celebration: Ensure fancy dress costumes and masks are well-fitted ensuring children can see and walk comfortably Be mindful that many fancy dress costumes can be extremely flammable so keep children wearing them well away from naked flames, paying particular attention to any capes or loose fabric Accompany children whilst out ‘trick or treating’ and use lights to stay visible – glow sticks are a great idea! Wrap up warm for the cold weather and be mindful and respectful of neighbours NWAS’ Interim Deputy Director of Operations, Dave Kitchin, said: “Halloween is a great time of year for ghostly fun but we know only too well how quickly it can turn into a real fright which is why it’s so important to follow our simple safety advice to avoid any nasty accidents. “It’s also important to remember to that 999 is for life-threatening or potentially life-threatening emergencies only and to be aware of the other options available to get healthcare for less serious incidents such as a minor injuries unit, walk-in-centre, GP, pharmacy or our NHS 111 Service.” Last year, the Trust received numerous unnecessary 999 calls over the Halloween weekend including vomiting after a night out, a sore throat, pulled muscle and contact lens stuck in the eye. As Halloween has become a popular time of year amongst party-goers, NWAS is also encouraging adults to stay safe on nights out by drinking alcohol in moderation, having plenty of water, staying with friends and planning their journey home in advance.