Is there a legal requirement for landlords to fit restrictors to windows where children live in the building?
Figures taken from DTI’s Home and Leisure Accident Surveillance System (HASS/LASS) indicate that more than 2,000 children under five are injured after falling from buildings and other structures. However, there is no specific legal requirement to fit restrictors to windows. Part N and Approved Document K of the Building Regulations state that prevention of falling includes use by all people in the property. A good landlord would be wise to fit window restrictors because this would reduce the risk of a child falling through the gap.
Approved Document B1 of the Building Regulations guidance states that "window locks may be fitted to egress windows subject to the stay being fitted with a release catch, which may be child resistant", but this would only apply to new buildings or those undergoing building work and material changes of use.
RoSPA’s policy is for window restrictors to be fitted to all windows at or above first floor level and that adults know how to bypass the restrictor in case of a fire. If windows are locked with standard window locks it is crucial that the key is kept out of the reach of children but that all adults know where the key is kept.
To read Approved Document B1 of the Building Regulations, please click on the following link: http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/uploads/br/BR_PDF_ADB1_2006.pdf
Date Updated/Created: 26/04/2011
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