As we transition into warmer days, many of us are opening windows to allow the cool breezes in. As you reopen your home this spring, take note of these potential window hazards and correct any areas to ensure
your home is safe for all.
Depending on the screen to keep things in.
Window screens do an excellent job of keeping bugs and critters from entering your home. They are not designed to handle a child or pet pushing on them from the inside. Don’t rely on them to handle that kind of weight.
Not making sure cords are secure.
Dangling cords on window blinds or shades can pose a choking hazard to children or even pets. Always wrap cords or purchase a kit that tucks the cords away safely. Make sure cribs are not placed near a window with cords or consider replacing with a cordless blind option.
Furniture placed too close to a window.
Kids love to climb! If you can, don’t place couches, chairs or low shelving near windows. Studies show that over 5000 children suffer injuries each year falling out of an open window. Take what steps you can to prevent this and talk to your children about the dangers of an open window.
Not using window stops or guards.
Everyone loves fresh air coming into the home. If you have small children or pets, window guards are an easy way to prevent falls. Most windows come with guards (or a latch) that when used, allow the window to be opened to only 3 to 5 inches. Older windows may benefit from a simple kit that allows you to add a stopper or guard. These devices are also an added security feature, as they prevent the window being opened any further from the outside of the home.
Not having a family emergency plan.
In case of an emergency, a window in your home may be your only way of getting out safely. Take a moment to see which window is best for an escape route. Does it open easily and fully? What is outside the window in terms of bushes or trees? Choose one on every floor and consider investing in a portable ladder that grips to the window sill for climbing down from a second story. Plan and test your escape route with the whole family.