I can’t afford to replace all my blinds and curtains - what advice can RoSPA give me to improve safety in my home?
There are several ways to ensure that the chances of a blind-cord accident happening are reduced:
- Pull-cords on curtains and blinds should be kept short and kept out of reach
- Tie up the cords, or use one of the many cleats, cord tidies, clips or ties that are available
- Do not place a child’s cot, bed, playpen or highchair near a window.
RoSPA does not recommend that cords are cut, even as a short-term solution. It is advisable that any action taken on the blind cord is a permanent one which will take the cord out of reach of children. It is not an expensive task and cleats - small plastic devices that are fitted to the side of the window for the operating cord to be wrapped around - are available from blind retailers.
Cutting the cord in the wrong place can make the blind inoperable; and it may also lead to one cord becoming a lot longer which increases the risk of entanglement. Cut cords can also become tangled up resulting in the reformation of a loop.
It is important to remember that this type of accident does not just involve blinds or curtains - other factors can come into play too, so:
- Do not hang drawstring bags where a small child could get their head through the loop of the drawstring
- Do not hang toys, or objects that could be a hazard, on the cot or bed
- Remember, the supervision of young children is a crucial way of preventing accidents involving them.