When it comes to keeping our kids safe and sound, there's basically nothing parents won't do. Most of us are borderline obsessed with dotting our i's and crossing our t's when it comes to making sure our homes are a safe haven for our little ones, particularly when they are energetic little toddlers.
But there might be one area we don't immediately think of as being hazardous to them -- windows. Would you believe that over 500 kids have been strangled by window blind cords over the last few decades? And according to Parents for Window Blind Safety (PFWBS), 57.5 percent of those incidents involved horizontal blinds like most of us have in our homes.
In July of 2012, a 17-month-old became entangled in a window cord and died. Her mother, Sophia Parslow, describes how she left her daughter for a brief time to run upstairs. The child was happily watching a TV show when Sophia exited the room, and upon her return maybe five minutes later, she found the little girl hanging from the window cord. She had climbed onto a chair, presumably to look out the window.
And in April of 2013, a 2-year-old boy in St. Louis got tangled in the window blind cord in his bedroom and also passed away. He had climbed up onto the window and his mother found him hanging by the cord, several feet off the ground.
Every story is just as tragic and heartbreaking as the next, and accidents involving window blinds can happen to anyone if the proper precautions aren't taken. But it's an issue that's so, SO easy to fix if you make a point to take the time to do it.
Here are a few safety tips to follow to make sure your windows aren't a danger to your child.
- Go cordless -- The PFWBS recommends using products that have NO accessible cords. This is the easiest and best way to ensure that window cords never present a danger in your household.
- Cover existing cords -- If outfitting your home with new cordless blinds is not an option, the PFWBS recommends a product called the Fashion Wand, which safely covers existing cords so they are not within your child's reach.
- Furniture placement is key -- Make sure your child's crib/toddler bed is not place up against a wall that has windows. Also keep toys and other furniture away from windows as well, so your child is not tempted to go near them.
- Pay attention to cord lengths -- If your blinds do have cords, they should be shortened to 7.25 inches, which makes them too short to strangle a child.
Have you taken the proper precautions with window blinds in your home?
Image via © iStock.com/Xsandra