Trading Standards issue warning about roller blinds

A fresh warning has been issued to parents and carers over the dangers of roller blinds – after another tragic accident in England.

Officers from the City of Edinburgh Council's Trading Standards team are keen to issue a fresh warning about the risk the blinds pose to young children. 

In Scotland in 2008, Muireann McLaughlin from Clackmannanshire was hanged by a cord at her home after climbing onto the window sill to wave to her grandmother.

To reduce these tragic accidents, the safety standard of window blinds was improved in 2009. 

Now, window blinds have a safer design and adequate warnings.   

However, there is still a risk that older products could still present a danger to children. 

Recently, a toddler in Plymouth died after accidentally hanging himself with a cord from a window blind in the family home.

Now, the Council is keen to get the message out that blinds operated by cords or chains can cause serious accidents including strangulation.

Councillor Robert Aldridge, Environment Leader, said: "Parents and carers need only make a few simple checks on any pull cords at home to ensure that they are not putting their children's safety at risk. The deaths that have occurred are tragic for the families involved and we need to do everything we can to prevent any more similar incidents happening. This campaign by Trading Standards highlights a few simple measures that can be taken to make blinds safer." 

Trading Standards have issued the following guidance: 

Cords ending in a loop are a particular risk. Cut the cord to get rid of the loop. Think about using tassels instead.

Make sure cords are out of the reach of children.

Where cords cannot be cut, a tension device can be used to pull the cord tight and secure it to a wall or floor.

Never put beds, cots or playpens within reach of an operating cord.

Keep sofas, chairs, tables and shelves away from windows to prevent children climbing up and reaching curtain or blind cords.


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