Pumpkin Carving into a jack-o-lantern

Pumpkin carving can be a wonderful family activity, but one little slip and the fun can quickly turn into a trip to the emergency room. If you’re an American adult, we’re going to make the assumption that you’ve probably carved a pumpkin before and know firsthand how slippery and tough they can be – how easy it is for a knife to slip, go through the skin and out the other side where your hand is holding the pumpkin steady.

So as a suggestion, consider decorating your pumpkin or follow a couple pumpkin carving safety tips to keep you and your family from becoming a Halloween accident statistic.

Pumpkin Carving Injury Statistics:

pumpkin patch

  • During October and November 2013, more than half of the estimated 4,400 Halloween-related injuries involved pumpkin carving.
  • According to Handcare.org Halloween is one of the top three holidays that produce the most emergency room visits.
  • According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, children ages 10-14 sustained the greatest proportion of injuries (30.3 percent) of those 33.3 percent were lacerations and 20.1 percent were fractures

Pumpkin Carving Safety Tips:

pumpkin carving procedure

  • Choose the right pumpkin – one that is sturdy with a flat bottom.
  • Carve pumpkins in a well-lit area.
  • Take your time.
  • Leave the carving to adults – let the kiddos trace the stencil on the pumpkin an use a spoon to remove the pulp and seeds.
  • Sharper knives aren’t better – they can get stuck in pumpkin tissue.
  • Us a pumpkin carving kit – with special saws, stencils and scoops.
  • If the kids want to carve the pumpkin themselves make sure to get a pumpkin carving kit specifically meant for kids.


  • cpsc.gov
  • kids.usa.gov
  • aaos.org
  • handcare.org
Author Photo

Paul d’Oliveira

Attorney Paul d’Oliveira has been practicing personal injury and disability law for over 30 years. He started his personal injury law practice in 1989 with two offices in Fall River, MA and East Providence, RI. Today his firm has 16 offices in RI and Southeastern, MA.

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