The Make it Safe campaign was launched in 2009 by the British Blind and Shutter Association following a series of incidents sparking fears over the safety of blind cords around young children. Blind safety standards have since been continually re-assessed, to ensure that they are safe for use, specifically for young children to be around.
The campaign has since seen the implementation of new standards for internal window blinds across European standards bodies. Standards now ensure they are a safe product, and that buyers know the steps they should take to prevent harm. An update published in 2014 outlined the following developments which must now be complied with by all traders by law:
- New blinds must be ‘Safe by Design’ (see below) or supplied with appropriate child safety devices
- A maximum cord and chain length
- Covers venetian, roller, vertical, pleated, honeycomb, Roman, and roll-up blinds, as well as plantation shutters.
Safe by Design
Safe by design blinds are defined as one that is cordless, or has concealed or tensioned cords. They work being pulled or pushed into position, rather than used via a cord attachment. Likewise, motorised shutter designs are also deemed as safe as they remove the need for cords to operate the material.
Some blinds will not be cordless or installed already tensioned – for this, you will need to acquire the appropriate safety devices to make your blinds child safe. Use a tensioning system to ensure the cord is never hanging loose, or an accumulation device such as a cleat, which keeps the cord gathered together and high up.
Why is making blinds safe so important?
Loose blind cords pose a strangulation risk to young children, with most accidental deaths involving cords occurring with 16 – 36 month olds. Children this young are often unable to free themselves or break the cord if they become entangled in the cord – an accident that could be fatal if the child is unsupervised.
It’s therefore vital that all appropriate steps are taken to ensure that your blinds meet the required safety standards, and that as manufacturers and installers of blinds, we uphold these standards.
How to make your home safe
- Choose blinds with no cord, particularly in your child’s room
- Do not place your child’s cot, bed, or high chair near a window with blinds
- Keep pull cords tied up and out of reach, using a cleat or tensioning device
Our team are committed to ensuring you have the blinds best suited to your requirements, and can supply bespoke blinds that perfectly complement your way of life, whilst also ensuring they are safe for use.
Contact us today to discuss your requirements, or for any further information, and we’ll be happy to help.« Return to news