Blind and curtain cord safety

Apr – May 2014

To minimise the risk to children, all new corded blinds, curtains and window coverings must comply with a national safety standard.

Blind and curtain cords have the potential to harm babies and children, who can be easily entangled in the loops.

According to the Office of Fair Trading, since 2000 at least 12 children have died from blind or curtain cord strangulation in Australia.

All new window coverings supplied to rental properties must follow the mandatory standard, which came into effect in 2010 and is detailed on the Product Safety Australia website.

 

Blinds and curtain cords supplied before 2010 can be made safe by either cutting the cords or hooking them up out of harm’s way.

Safety tassels, which join the ends of blind cords together and separate when pressure is applied, are available from hardware stores.

Alternatively, blind cords can be wrapped securely around hooks attached high on the wall.

 

7 easy steps

 

  1. Make sure your children cannot reach any blind or curtain cords.
  2. Make sure the bottom of any blind or curtain cord is at least 160 cm above the floor.
  3. Move children’s cots, beds, high chairs or playpens away from windows with blind or curtain cords.
  4. Make sure your child cannot climb on furniture and reach blind or curtain cords.
  5. Wrap blind cords securely around a hook attached high on the wall.
  6. Install a cord tensioning device for vertical blinds.
  7. When installing new blinds, seek advice from the supplier about products that use ‘wands’ instead of cords to operate the blinds.

 

Are killer cords in reach of little hands at your house?

 

Many parents, grandparents, friends and carers do not realise that blind and curtain cords have the potential to injure or strangle babies and children. A child can place their head in the loop created by a blind or curtain cord. If the child then tries to sit or falls down, they can hang themselves in the loop. Cord-related injuries and deaths are very easy to prevent.

 

In 2006, the Queensland Government introduced a mandatory safety standard for the supply of new blinds, curtains and shades. Although the standard ensures all new window coverings are safe, there are many unsafe blinds, curtains and shades still in Queensland homes.

 

Is your home safe?

 

Safety tassels, which join the ends of blind cords together and split when pressure is applied, are available from hardware stores. You can also get hooks and other devices that will keep your home safe.

 

Front of Brochure image

Blind and curtain safety sheet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information on product safety, visit

www.fairtrading.qld.gov.au or

www.productsafety.gov.au

Great state. Great opportunity.

Department of Justice and Attorney-General

0321FT_

The Office of Fair Trading recommends the bottom of any blind cord is at least 160cm above the floor level. [link to http://www.fairtrading.qld.gov.au/blind-and-curtain-cord-safety-reminder.htm]

Lessors are obliged to ensure a rental property is in a good state of repair and fit for the tenant to live in.

Further information is available on the ACCC website.

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