OPSS is reminding people of the potential dangers of blind cords and loops to children and the steps they can take to reduce the risks
Working with The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, the Chartered Trading Standards Institute, the Child Accident Prevention Trust, and the British Blind and Shutter Association, OPSS is sharing safety messages on how to keep children safe.
Looped blind cords and chains can strangle children and young people. Although changes to standards for blinds in 2014 have led to improved product safety, products installed earlier may not have these safety features and millions of households could be affected.
New blinds with looped cords must have child safety devices installed at the point of manufacture or be sold with the blind.
OPSS and its partners have produced the safety tips below to help make homes safer.
Fit a tidy, tensioner or a cleat
Tidies and tensioner should be firmly fixed to an adjoining surface to ensure that the cord or chain is permanently held tight. Cleats should be positioned out of children’s reach on an adjacent surface that is at least 1.5 metres from the floor. After blind use, cords should be fastened up in a figure of eight making sure all the spare cord is secured on the cleat.
Move furniture away from windows
Children love to climb so keep furniture away from blinds. This includes cots, beds, highchairs, and playpens.
The campaign materials can be downloaded from the consumer safety awareness campaigns materials GOV.UK page. The safety information campaign can be supported through retweets or sending out these important messages using the hashtag #blindcordsafety.
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