Sad news out of Utah as yet another child dies due to strangulation on a window blind cord last week.
How Serious Are Blind Strangulations?
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, one child dies every month due to cords on window treatments and blinds. However the American Medical Association found that it’s twice as frequent, and simply goes under reported. The watchdog group, “Parents For Window Blind Safety” reports that blind cord injuries can be as frequent as every single week. These injuries can lead to death, brain damage, and permanent disability.
The mortality rate for window cord strangulations make them one of the greatest strangulation threats to children under three. Other products which have caused strangulation injuries have been strings on pacifiers, recliner chairs, baby gates, and electric garage doors.
Almost all of the window coverings involved in child strangulation incidents are horizontal style mini-blinds or venetian blinds.
Maryland Leads the Way.
In 2010, Governor O’Malley signed a law into effect called “Angel’s Law” which banned corded window treatments in daycares and in foster homes. This law helps keep children safe who have been placed in busy environments where carepersons may not be able to monitor them closely.
The Angels Law is named after A boy named Angel who played with his sister in their room. His sister climbed up and pulled the cords down so they could play “zip line.” Even though the cords on these blinds were the separate cords with tassels, as law requires, a simple tangle turned them into a deadly trap.
What Can You Do?
You can protect your family by replacing the window treatments in your home with cordless blinds. If you need to save money, begin with the blinds in places where the children play, sleep, or are left alone. 80% of strangulations occur near a crib or in a child’s room.
If your child has been injured or killed due to a window blind, or any defective product, or while at a daycare or in foster care, you have legal rights that are probably not being explained to you. Be certain to speak to an attorney at Ingerman & Horwitz about how you can protect your rights and the rights of your children.