Before children start out on their “trick or treat” rounds, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police recommend that parents should: Make sure that an adult or an older responsible youth will be supervising the outing for children under age 12. Plan and discuss the route trick-or-treaters intend to follow. Know the names of older children’s companions. Set a time limit. Instruct your children to travel only in familiar areas and along an established route. Teach your children to stop only at houses or apartment buildings that are well-lit and never to enter a stranger’s home. Feed the kids before they go so they will be less likely to eat the treats before they get home. Warn them not to eat anything before you inspect it. Review all appropriate trick-or-treat safety precautions, including pedestrian/traffic safety rules. Pin a slip of paper with the child’s name; address and phone number inside a pocket in case the child gets separated from the group. Welcome trick-or-treaters with your porch lights and any exterior lights on. Patrol your street occasionally to discourage speeding motorists, acts of malicious mischief and crimes against children. Report any suspicious or criminal activity to your police department immediately; you can dial 9-1-1. Candlelit jack-o-lanterns should be kept clear of doorsteps and landings. Consider using flashlights instead of candles to light jack-o-lanterns. Keep pets away from doors so children will not become frightened.