Every day one child below the age of five is admitted to hospital after falling from an open window or a balcony.
Toddlers and children can, and too often do, fall from windows or from balconies and suffer serious injuries. Last summer – due to the hot weather and the lockdown – this increased. But with people being encouraged to ventilate their homes due to the coronavirus pandemic, it will continue to be a risk throughout winter.
Climbing and exploring is a key part of a child’s physical development as they get stronger, more agile and more curious. However, many falls happen because parents are unaware of their child’s newly acquired abilities. Children can’t be supervised all of the time, but with some simple adjustments serious falls can be avoided.
Tips for staying safe:
- Teach children to play at a safe distance from windows.
- Keep furniture or items that can be climbed on, such as beds and sofas, away from windows. Make sure nothing can be pushed up to the window and used as a step.
- Keep windows closed and locked when not needed or when children are not being supervised.
- Keep windows no more than four inches open when children are in the room.
- Ask about window safety when you visit other homes.
- Make sure you are aware of where windows keys are located in the event of a fire.
- Do not put heavy or sharp items on window sills where they could fall.
- Ensure any ropes or cords on blinds or curtains are kept out of the reach of children.
Do you live in a tall building? Check your window restrictors
All homes in taller buildings should have window restrictors or limiters fitted. These stop windows being opened more than a small amount to prevent incidents.
If you live in a taller building:
- Ensure your windows have restrictors or limiters in place and working correctly.
- Do not remove or tamper with your windows for any reason. They have been installed for your safety.
- Do not allow children to open windows or show them how to operate restrictors or limiters.