Prior to aesthetics, safety is the first consideration that we should always take into account in our homes. Sometimes, even the simplest things can cause harm to our family and loved ones, particularly children. Ordinary household fixtures, just like pull cord and window strings, can pose a threat to our kids. The risk of strangulation on even younger children is high as they go around the house exploring these seemingly harmless items.
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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission urges buyers and consumers of window blinds and coverings to check their window furnishings and fix all possible dangerous cords and loops that may pose a threat to babies and children in their household. Parents and guardians should always keep their children as far as possible from all types of cords at home. Several mandatory standards for internal blinds, curtains, and window fittings have already been established since 2010 and should apply to all brands of blinds and window coverings in Australia. These standards are also mandatory for window installation services and have come to effect early January this 2015.
Even with existing standards already established for window treatments at home, there are several tips a home maker should consider before purchasing and installing blinds in their home.
Brand name and quality are not just the factors that one should consider prior to buying window treatments. Several safety design features should be present in your window blinds purchase to lessen the potential risk it may offer to your children at home once it is installed.
- Blinds should have warning labels to remind you of the potential dangers it could bring to your children.
- Window treatments should have access on how to secure cords and chains, leaving no loops or strands that children may potentially reach.
- It should operate and function in a way that no loose or exposed cords or chains will be present.
Things to Remember when Installing Blinds
Installing your blinds properly, away from possible areas where kids could climb and get hold of your cords and window looped chain, is the next step to keep your kids safe from your window covering cords. Here are some of the main things to keep in mind when doing so.
- Do not leave looped cords and loose strands hanging down. Be sure to inform your installer or consider this when installing your blinds. They should also fit snugly onto your windows. You can read guides on how to measure your windows prior to buying vertical blinds from Blinds Online Australia.
- Get rid of the looped cords if possible by cutting the cord and installing tassels instead.
- Tie-downs or cleats and tension devices can be used to enclose cords and chain loops to secure it away from your children’s reach. You can get these from window furnishing stores and hardware shops.
- Keep in mind to fix tie-downs and tension devices firmly on the wall or onto the window frame itself so that children will not be able to remove it. Avoid using materials that could not support weight like double tapes of glue. Nail or screw them tightly in place.
General Window Treatments Safety at Home
Safety against possible hazards from window coverings should be also practiced daily at home. Here are points you should remember.
- Check every room in your home daily for blinds and curtains that have long dangling cords that are either looped or loose. Include all cords visible that may be reached by children or ones that are located near furniture where they could climb at.
- Do not put cot, beds, high chairs, bookcases, or playpens near the window where kids can potentially reach your blinds and curtains. This can strangle their necks during play or even while sleeping.
- Always supervise children while in any room where they could possible reach blinds and curtain rods. Accidental strangulation can still happen anytime even with these precautions taken seriously. It goes without saying that leaving your kids unsupervised is a major mistake you should never do.
Keeping your kids safe and away from the risks that curtain cords and blinds looped chain may bring is possible through keen supervision and awareness of what’s dangerous for your kids and what is not.