6 Simple Jack-o-Lantern Safety Steps
Pumpkin carving is an activity that needs to be approached with caution, especially if you’re planning to include the kids. Remember, your goal is to carve the pumpkin and not yourself! We want to help prevent a sprint for the first aid kit or the emergency room by offering these tips.
Also, check out our other Halloween Safety Blogs: It takes planning to be this Spooky and Candy! Candy! Candy! And Safety!
- The workstation Set up your carving workstation on a well-lit and dry surface. You don’t want those pumpkins to slip and slide! Use a tray or jar to store your tools when not in use. If the kids are going to help, make sure they can easily reach the work surface and make sure everyone has enough room, no pushing and shoving please.
- No child locks on pumpkins If children are involved, they should be supervised at all times. This is a perfect opportunity for the family to work as a team to determine the face of your jack-o-lantern. Younger kids can help by decorating with glue sticks, glitter, and magic markers. Older children can help punch out the design on the pumpkin, and if they’re permitted to use a knife, encourage them to work slowly.
- Be picky about your tools A small knife with a short serrated blade is your best bet for pumpkin carving. The knife that’s included in a pumpkin carving kit you find at the store is a great example of what you should use. These usually have a serrated blade that’s not as sharp as the kitchen knives. Sharper isn’t better when it comes to pumpkin carving; the serrated edge will make your work easier.
- Point the blade away and handle with care Point the blade edge away from you as much as possible while carving out the design. If your hand slips or you lose control of the blade, you’re less likely to get cut. Always be mindful of where you put your free hand while carving, too.
- A Saw of Life Gently saw back and forth through the pumpkin to complete your design. Take your time and avoid the urge to make big slices so that you don’t injure yourself.
- It’s what’s inside that counts Forget about candles. They create a fire hazard and it’s not worth the risk. Battery powered lights are best when it’s time to illuminate your pumpkin. Wrap a short string of lights around a canning jar or small vase and place it inside the pumpkin for maximum illumination. Or find a glow stick and prop it up inside.
There are even battery powered candles that flicker and look just like a real candle!