Child Safe Window Treatments
Regardless of whether or not there will be children in your home, child safety regulations are mandatory for all new blinds sold and installed in Australia. These national standards came into effect on January 1, 2015 replacing various state and territory legislations. Sadly children in Australia have died as a result of strangulation by the looped cords on different curtains or blinds, so what can you do to make sure your window coverings not only comply but ensure any children in the home are safe?
Child Safe Operating Systems
If you are looking at purchasing new blinds or curtains, there are a number of different styles of blinds available with ‘cordless’ operating systems that eliminate the need for cords, such as motorisation options or simple spring lifting systems. In our nursery pictured, the beautiful sheer curtains are on tracks that are hand operated by the use of wands, to open or close the curtains across. Behind these sheers are Somfy® wire-free battery operated blackout roller blinds that are operated via a remote control. Simply push a button and the blinds go up or down, giving you totally child safe light control. Chain operated roller blinds are still hugely popular, and provided these blinds are installed correctly with the use of cord tensioners that secure the loop chain to the wall, they do comply with safety standards.
The standard states that “The corded internal window covering must be installed in a way that ensures a loose cord cannot form a loop 220 mm or longer at or less than 1,600 mm above floor level”. If you have existing blinds that may have been installed prior to the legislation, that do not have safety devices installed they can be made safe by the retro-fitting of tensioning devices.
Keep Windows Clear
Other things to consider in helping make your home safer, are to keep furniture including cots, beds and highchairs well away from the windows. If you’d like to know more you about how to make your home safer for babies and children visit https://www.productsafety.gov.au