Now that the warmer weather is here to stay, people across the nation -- including right here in California -- are gearing up for the annual rite of passage that is spring cleaning. This means that people will be doing more than just the bare minimum when it comes to riding their homes of dust and dirt, perhaps cleaning out their refrigerators, organizing their closets or even washing their windows.
While people likely don't give much thought to either their windows or the windows around them, it's important to understand that they can actually present a very real and immediate danger if not properly managed.
If you have a hard time believing this, consider that the National Safety Council, the nonprofit whose stated purpose is "to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities," declared last week National Window Safety Week.
According to the NSC, this weeklong initiative serves as a forum in which to increase awareness about the importance of having a fire escape plan and preventing serious -- and even deadly falls -- from windows located at significant heights, a danger that is especially prevalent among young children.
"Tragic and often preventable window falls can happen in just seconds," said an NSC program manager. "When it comes to window safety, there is no substitute for the importance of adult supervision of children around windows to help keep them safe. However, there are simple steps that parents and caregivers can take to aide in preventing these tragedies with young children."
While a complete rundown of all of the NSC's window safety tips are clearly beyond the scope of a single blog post, here are a few of the more important points:
- Remember that screens are not designed to prevent falls, rather they are only designed to keep insects out.
- Make sure there are no obstructions blocking the windows from being opened in the event of a fire or other emergency.
- Ensure that windows are installed properly and in compliance with code.
It's important to remember that if you are injured or a family member is lost in a window fall or other accident attributable to the negligence of another homeowner, business owner or landlord, you should strongly consider speaking with an experienced legal professional to learn more about your options for pursuing justice.
Source: National Safety Council, "National Safety Council provides safety tips for National Window Safety Week," April 4, 2014