With the summer weather comes the desire to open windows and let in the fresh air. If you have young children, however, those open windows could be a source of danger – especially if you are on an upper floor. Just recently there have been several toddlers in the Portland Metro Area who have fallen out of windows and hurt themselves – luckily no one this year has died as a result. This is a good reminder to parents and homeowners to take some time to review these safety tips and check your home. Here are some important tips from Portland Fire & Rescue:
- Don’t leave young children alone – injuries can happen in seconds.
- When young children are around, close and lock windows. For ventilation, open windows that children can’t reach.
- Set and enforce rules about keeping children’s play away from windows and/or patio doors.
- Don’t rely on screens to prevent a fall. Insect screens are designed to provide ventilation while keeping insects out – they will NOT prevent a child’s fall from a window.
- Never paint or nail windows shut. You must be able to open them to escape in an emergency.
- Always be sure that you have at least one window in each sleeping area that meets escape and rescue requirements.
- Keep window treatments (blinds, cords, drapes, etc.) away from cribs and playpens and out of children’s reach.
- If young children live in the home, consider installing window guards on the windows that are not required for emergency escape or rescue in a fire. Be aware that window guards must have easy release mechanisms so that they do not impede emergency escape and rescue.
Contact Portland Fire & Rescue’s Prevention Division at (503) 823-3700 to determine proper window guard placement.