NYS DCP Reminds Consumers to Buy Wireless Window Treatments

Wed, 10/27/2021 12:45 p.m.

October is National Window Covering Safety Month

√ Strangulation injuries from cords continue to harm young children

√ When wireless window treatments are not possible, basic safety precautions are required to keep cables out of the reach of children

Submitted by the New York State Division of Consumer Protection

During National Window Covering Safety Month, the New York State Consumer Protection Department warns families to go wireless for all window covering. The Consumer Product Safety Commission found that an average of nine children per year die from strangulation due to shutters, and an additional 200 children suffered serious injuries between 2009 and 2020. In December 2018, the window treatment industry voluntarily agreed to phase out window treatments with cords. Therefore, warehouse window covers sold in stores or online should be wireless or free of accessible wires to meet revised voluntary safety standards.

“Strangulation from the string of a window treatment can happen in no time,” said New York Secretary of State Rossana Rosado. “The New York Consumer Protection Department is raising awareness of this issue by promoting the replacement of corded window coverings or taking active steps to keep pull cords up and out of reach when replacement is not possible.”

New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker, said, “I encourage parents and caregivers to be vigilant and aware of the dangers of window treatment cord and to follow the practices listed to prevent a tragic accident. I thank our partner organizations for their efforts to raise awareness of this problem and to help put an end to these injuries and deaths. “

Sheila J. Poole, New York State Office of Children and Families Services, said, “Spending an extra minute to ensure the window cover cords are securely stowed out of the reach of children can make the difference in life and mean death. As autumn falls and winter approaches, kids will spend more time indoors. This reminder alerts all parents, grandparents and caregivers to the fact that they can avoid tragedy by installing wireless window treatments and, when wireless window systems are not possible, keep cables safe and out of the reach of children. “

If a wired window replacement is not possible, the DCP recommends three additional safety measures to secure cables:

√ Tie loose ends together. Secure the pull cords with a cord clamp or wall mount well beyond the reach of a child. Simply placing a pull cord on a piece of furniture or wrapping it around the window trim can cause the pull cord to loosen and dangle within reach of the child.

√ Eliminate tangled pull cords. If any part of the cable has a loop or plastic connector, simply cutting the end and removing the connector will ensure that the pull cord ends don’t become an accidental strangulation hazard.

√ Install rope stopper. Make sure the rope stoppers are properly installed to limit the length of the inner lifting rope that can be pulled out.

√ Keep away from the game. Move everything kids play with off the window coverings and pull the strings, including all cribs, beds, furniture, and toys.

Further ideas for retrofitting wired window treatments can be found at https://windowcoverings.org/retrofit-your-windows/.

The New York State Department of Consumer Protection is dedicated to educating, assisting, and empowering the state’s consumers. People can submit a complaint to the DCP at https://dos.ny.gov/consumer-protection.

For more information on consumer protection, call the DCP hotline at 800-697-1220 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays or visit the DCP website at https://dos.ny.gov/consumer-protection . The division can also be reached on Twitter at @NYSConsumer or Facebook at www.facebook.com/nysconsumer.

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