RoSPA Child Safety Scotland

Child Safety Scotland

Strangulation

Blind Cords

Children are at risk from strangulation from looped cords such as blind cords and chains. Typically we hear about one or two children dying each year in the UK after becoming tangled in blind cords so look out for this hazard in your home, as well as in homes that your child may visit.

Young children also like to explore and this can get them into difficulty when they try to squeeze their body through small gaps, resulting in their head getting stuck. Supervision of young children when they are on the move is essential.

Prevention

Looped window cords should be kept short and out of reach of young children. Additionally, when it comes to replacing blinds, choose ones that do not have a cord.

Keep furniture and beds away from windows where there is a blind cord present as research indicates that most deaths happen in the bedroom.

Drawstring bags and dressing gowns with cords should not be left hanging on a child's bed as there is the risk of a child pulling on the cord and getting it tangled round their neck.

Try to discourage young children from squeezing through small gaps where there is a chance that they may get trapped such as through banisters or rails.

Play equipment in the garden should not be placed near washing lines and ropes should not be left lying around.

The use of cot bumpers are not recommended because babies are most at risk from suffocation when they are sleeping.  Cot bumpers can also pose a risk of suffocation, overheating and asphyxiation. In addition to this, once your baby can move around the cot and potentially pull themselves up on the bumper, there is an increased risk of a fall from the cot.

More Information can be found on the Lullaby Trust website at: www.lullabytrust.org.uk.