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Safety tips for pumpkin carving

This Halloween, don't let jack-o'-lantern carving get scary. Here's how to avoid injury.

Safe pumpkin carving with small child

The combination of slippery pumpkins and sharp knives can be dangerous. Follow these tips, and other Halloween decorating safety tips, to help keep everyone safe this year.

Is there a minimum age for carving a pumpkin?

Consumer Reports recommends that children 14 and younger should not do the actual pumpkin carving. But younger kids can still get in on the fun:

  • Have them draw the patterns for their pumpkins.
  • Allow them to decorate their pumpkins with markers, paint or non-carving decoration kits.
  • Let them clean out the seeds and pulp from inside the pumpkins.

If you decide to let your teens carve pumpkins, closely supervise in case anything goes wrong.

When should I carve my pumpkin?

  • A carved pumpkin usually lasts three to five days.
  • If the weather is cooler, you can carve your pumpkin up to seven days before Halloween.

What pumpkin carving tools should be used?

Big kitchen knives aren't the best fit for this job. According to Consumer Reports, a pumpkin carving kit is a safer option. The tools in these kits are smaller and designed to easily pierce pumpkins, but not as sharp as your average kitchen knives.

  • Work slowly and steadily — don't rush the project.
  • Cut away from your body with the carving tool.

What are some pumpkin carving safety tips?

Before you start carving, prepare your pumpkin carving area and tools:

  • Follow proper technique to avoid finger and hand injuries.
  • Use small, controlled motions when carving.
  • Keep your free hand out of the way to avoid mishaps.
  • Make sure the carving area is dry, well lit and on a stable surface.
  • Wash and dry all of your tools before carving.
  • Keep your hands clean and dry to avoid slipping.

Safe pumpkin carving is just one key to a happy Halloween. Get more Halloween safety tips for a worry-free holiday from State Farm®.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm®. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. The information is not intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. Nor is it intended to effect coverage under our policy. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.

State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates) is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites hyperlinked from this page. State Farm has no discretion to alter, update, or control the content on the hyperlinked, third party site. Access to third party sites is at the user's own risk, is being provided for informational purposes only and is not a solicitation to buy or sell any of the products which may be referenced on such third party sites.


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