We expect parents to cover electrical outlets, put gates on stairs, and childproof their doors and cabinets, but we often forget about the hidden danger of the cords from window coverings.
Yet the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) says corded window coverings are one of the top five hidden hazards in American homes, with infants and children (and family pets) accidentally becoming entangled in window cords. A serious accident can only take seconds.
That’s why the CPSC and Window Covering Safety Council (WCSC) are urging parents and caregivers to check their window coverings for exposed and dangling cords as part of National Window Covering Safety Month.
The CPSC, WCSC, and safety advocates all recommend using only cordless window coverings or window coverings with inaccessible cords in homes with young children. “New industry innovations and safety standards have provided consumers with more choices than ever to obtain cordless products or those with inaccessible cords,” said WCSC Executive Director, Peter Rush.
The WCSC urges parents to replace window blinds, corded shades, and draperies with products that are cordless or have inaccessible cords marked with the Best for Kids™ certification label. The label enables you to easily identify products best suited for homes with young children.
In rooms with corded window coverings, you should follow these safety guidelines:
- Move all cribs, beds, furniture and toys away from windows and window cords, preferably to another wall.
- When window cords are present, ensure that all window cords are out of sight and reach, by shortening or moving them up and away, so that they are inaccessible to young children.
- Make sure that tasseled pull cords are as short as possible
- Check that cord stops are properly installed and adjusted to limit the movement of inner lift cords.
- Continuous-loop cords on draperies and vertical blinds should be permanently anchored to the floor or wall.
- You can also retrofit older window coverings for child safety.
Keep these safety tips in mind when you’re visiting family and friends who might not have young children in the home. A roll of blue painter’s tape comes in handy for a quick temporary fix of taping cords to the woodwork.
Stop by one of our retail stores or arrange a FREE in-home consultation with one of Hirshfield’s Window Treatment Designers. The Shop at Home service is available in six key marketplaces and surrounding areas: Twin Cities, Rochester, Alexandria, Brainerd Lakes Area, St. Cloud and Fargo/Moorhead.
Since Frank and Elizabeth Hirshfield opened their first store in 1894, it has been our mission to do the best job possible meeting customer needs and solving customer problems. Hirshfield’s. People and products you can trust.