Children Can Strangle on Curtain and Blind Cords
Curtain and blind cords can be a real danger to babies and young children. Children have been strangled when they got caught in curtain or blind cords. Most victims were under the age of 3.
Fortunately, child safety is something that the window coverings industry has seriously addressed within the last few years, and major manufacturers continue to develop new features to ensure the safety of your home.
Concerned parents may wish to have window coverings with no cords at all. If so, please ask us. Many products are available with cordless or motorized options—and of course, shutters are always cord-free.
None of these precautions are 100% foolproof, nor should they be considered an alternative to direct parental supervision. All cord safety is ultimately the responsibility of the parent.
Do not leave curtain and blind cords hanging. Keep cords out of reach of children.
If you already have blinds, keep them safe by eliminating any looped cords.
Cut the cords short. Tie the cord to itself. Whether the blind is up or down, make sure children can’t reach the cord.
Keep sofas, chairs, tables, shelves, and bookcases away from windows in order to prevent children from climbing up to reach the curtain or blind cord.
Use a clip, clothes pin, big twist tie, or tie the cord to itself with a knot to keep the cord out of the reach of children.
Get rid of the loop in the cord by cutting the cord in half. Then, put plastic tassels or a break-away device at the end of the cords. Even with this adjustment, the cords can still be unsafe. Cords should still also be secured out of a child’s reach. Please note that not all lift styles can be adjusted this way.
Wrap the cord around a cleat that you have attached to the wall near the top of the curtains or blinds.
Child Safety Guidelines
First and foremost, there is no substitute for direct parental supervision.
NEVER put a crib, bed, high chair or playpen near a window or a patio door where a child can reach the curtain or blind cord and strangle.
If you have blinds with looped cords, you can make them child-safe by cutting the cord and attaching a new tassel to each cut end (see directions above).
Many products now come with special features that enhance product safety. If you have small children, you’ll want to look for these features:
- Break-Thru Safety Tassels break apart and separate when pressure is applied on them. Separated tassels or break-thru tassels can still be VERY dangerous if the cord is still very long, or has even a small twist in it.
- The Continuous Cord feature uses a pulley-like system with a single cord, keeping the cord loop taut and eliminating dangling cords.
- The Cordless feature eliminates cords altogether. Blinds can be lifted or lowered by hand.
- Motorization features eliminate lift cords through battery-operated remote controls. Shades can be lifted and lowered at the touch of a button, and should anything get in its way, the built-in Safety-Stop automatically stops the shade.
In addition to these great options, all of the blinds at ABC Blind & Drapery use lead-free paint, which is one fewer danger you’ll have to worry about. (Some imported vinyl mini blinds contain lead, and when children chew on these blinds, they run the risk of lead poisoning.)
No matter what choice you make for your window covering, please be careful and take all necessary precautions to help ensure your child’s safety.
For additional safety tips and free repair kits, contact the Window Covering Safety Council.