By Tracy Andryc
Prevent Child Abuse Rhode Island
When the warm weather arrives the first thing we want to do is open the windows and let in the fresh air. However, parents need to be aware that open windows are a very real danger for children. Across the country, thousands of children are killed or injured every year as a result of falling from a window. Sadly, two Rhode Island children have already been injured this year after falling from windows in their homes.
Following safety precautions when you open your windows can keep your children safe from dangerous and deadly falls. Here are severalÂ simple precautions to keepÂ in mind:
– Open windows from the top so children cannot reach the screened part of the window. Visit the National Safety Council for more window safety advice.
– Screens are not strong enough to keep a child from falling out the window, never rely on them to keep your child safe.
– Install window guards that are available at your local hardware store. They are designed to keep your child from climbing or falling out of the window. For more info on window guards, visit www.window-bars.com or www.totsafe.com.
– Keep furniture away from windows so kids won’t have something to climb on. Many children have fallen from windows while playing on a sofa placed by the window. The Home Safety Council has lots of helpful information for keeping your family safe.
– Set and enforce rules against playing near the windows. Never put your child’s toy box or playthings near a window.
– Teach your child to stay away from windows. Be sure to teach your child the dangers of window falls and be diligent about window safety. Click here to download a window safety activity book for your child.
Tracy Andryc is a mother of three and the executive assistant at Prevent Child Abuse Rhode Island. She writes a monthly parenting newsletter called Parenting Rules!Â that covers a variety of parenting and child safety topics. Prevent Child Abuse RI is a private nonprofit organization whose mission is to ensure the safety and well-being of children in Rhode Island through awareness, education, and advocacy.
Photo courtesy of Prevent Child Abuse Rhode Island.