Understanding Window Safety
Keeping our children safe is a challenging task for any parent. Here at the Child Safety Store, it is our goal to assist parents and caregivers as much as possible in their efforts to keep kids out of harm’s way. On this blog, we’ve already discussed the importance of babyproofing your home. Now let’s narrow the lens a bit further. Today, let's talk window safety.
Injuries caused by young children falling from windows are more common than you may think. In fact, 3,300 kids each year fall out of a window and are injured enough to be hospitalized. Tragically, about eight of those falls every year even result in death.
Make Windows Off-Limits
Children are curious and resourceful. They climb, jump and maneuver to get just about anywhere. So if there is furniture to climb on, they will. If that furniture makes it easier for them to reach the window, they’ll do that as well. Moving this climbable furniture is a smart step that can help prevent your kids from reaching the window and potentially falling. If a fall does occur, call 911 immediately and don’t move the fallen child.
Above all, when children are present, keep all windows closed and locked. If windows are open, make sure children can't get to them. Best yet, make the window area a place that the child won’t want to explore. Keeping the entire window area bare and boring is a good way to keep kids uninterested. When toys and decorations are near or on the window, it invites kids to play and interact with this danger area. After all, children don’t need to reach the actual window to get hurt.
The cord on the window’s blinds or shades can also be cause for alarm. Dangling cords can cause strangulation or near-strangulation. To help curtail this potential hazard, keep those cords under control using a product like the Safety 1st Blind Cord Wind Ups. You can learn more about this window safety product by watching our video review:
Create Barriers to Windows
Like we said, some children are resourceful, so it is possible that your child may reach the window anyway. If they do, there should still be several barriers in place that will prevent an accident. For instance, while screens are a good idea, they are not a proper barrier for protection. Typically, it is easy to break through a screen with just a little pressure. It would be quite easy for a child of any age to fall through one.
We’ve all heard of safety gates to block a door entrance, but have you heard of window guards or window stops? These window safety tools may be less familiar to many parents. However, they can literally save your child’s life. Window guards are among the most effective ways to prevent a fall and decrease the risk of a serious injury.
Installing American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM)-approved hardware can help prevent accidents. These products, like KidCo® Window Stop, will keep a window locked or allow it to open only a few inches. Luckily, these stops can be used on both hung and sliding windows.
Injuries due to falling from a window are common, but they are preventable when you take the necessary precautions mentioned above.