This morning Selina was able to talk a little about the dangers of children falling out of windows on BBC Radio Berkshire– and with 4000 under 15’s being taken to hospital every year from such a fall, parents are obviously right to be concerned. So what can they do?
For younger children, nothing beats adult supervision, staying in the same room as your child is obviously important – but distractions are inevitable, so make it more difficult for the child to even reach the window. Pull beds, sofas and furniture away from windows – kids are great climbers! Glass in most windows is not toughened, so open or closed, a child could potentially fall through any time they are allowed to climb onto a windowsill – teach them to move away any time they are tempted.
A second line of defence could be to fit a restrictor. These ensure that the window can only be opened a short distance – not enough that a child could slip through.
This is the standard that is appropriate to domestic settings. At home, every window is a potential fire escape and these restrictors are operated with push or twist buttons, not keys which could delay opening the window and escaping in an emergency. Some homes have windows that come fitted with locks with keys. If this is the case, ensure that the key is kept on a hook near the window, out of reach of children. Other homes come with window restrictors already fitted. Some of these are too easy for a child to overcome, so please check these, and don’t depend on them unless you are sure that your child cannot work out how to overcome it.
As children get older, they will be able to drag furniture across a room to climb up against a window, and ultimately learn how to operate any restrictors that are in place. Teaching your children to ‘think safe’ and understand the dangers associated with windows and falling is the best defence.
Childproofing your home is essential to keeping your little ones – for more information on Child Proofing check out our Fred Safety product range here
For more information on BBC Radio Berkshire – Click here