Florida Poison Control has tips to keep kids safe during Halloween

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Pumpkins, black cats, spider webs and witches can only mean one thing — it’s almost Halloween! To help keep little ghosts and goblins safe while trick-or-treating – Florida poison control wants parents to be mindful of some risks.


The Drug Enforcement Administration has seized “rainbow fentanyl” in 26 cases across the country, including here in Florida. It is pills and powder that come in a variety of bright color shapes and sizes and they all resemble candy. Local leaders want parents to be aware and cautious while they’re trick-or-treating.

“See if its wrapped, unwrapped, if there’s anything that looks suspicious. You want to make sure if there’s any doubt throw it out,” said Dr. Dawn Sollee, Director of the Florida/USVI Poison information center.

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Some other things to keep in mind aside from candy or decorations is the use of dry ice. While dry ice can make a spooky scene at home, there could be consequences if it is not handled carefully, according to the Florida poison control center.

“Dry ice can cause burns if it’s not handled appropriately. So, you want to make sure you follow the instructions on using dry ice,” said Sollee.

Back in October 2016, Action News Jax told you about a 7-year-old girl from St. Augustine who was burned by a flammable liquid inside a pumpkin. Her burns were life-threatening and she had to be airlifted to Shands hospital in Gainesville.

Dr. Sollee said remind children not to chew on glow sticks, they contain an oily liquid that is a mild irritant. She says it doesn’t hurt to carry their poison control center number while trick-or-treating since they are specialized to assess, triage and manage poison information and exposure cause around the clock.

“Just in case there is that emergency, we would be able to help you and hopefully everyone would have a wonderful Halloween,” said Sollee.

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Poison control center phone number is for poisoning questions or emergencies 1-800-222-1222.