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Legacy in the News: Window safety myths and facts

Metro Parent

June 2013

Sandy Nipper, R.N., child safety program coordinator at Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel shares the importance of window fall safety, goals of the STOP at 4” window fall campaign and myths and facts parents may have about window safety and what families can do today. To learn more about window safety visit Legacy’s window safety site and Safety Center on the Legacy Emanuel campus.

MYTH: Children who have been taught will know better.
FACT: Teaching window safety may not be enough for the insatiably curious young child who is hardwired to explore, lacks impulse control and is not yet able to anticipate danger.

MYTH: Window screens will provide protection.
FACT: In case of emergency, window screens are designed to pop out with very little pressure and then factor in a child’s short height and high center of gravity.

MYTH: Child window falls happen in homes where there is poor parenting or lack of supervision.
FACT: Washington window safety expert, Brian Johnston, M.D., MPH, chief of pediatrics at Harborview Medical Center writes, “Many of these kids are under the direct supervision of a parent when this happens. It’s not neglect. A window has a screen on it which gives a false sense of security.”

MYTH: Living in a single level home removes the risk.
FACT: Consider that your child might spend time in someone’s multi-level home. Consider the window height above and the composition of the surface below ground level windows.

MYTH: Young children cannot reach windows.
FACT: From chairs to toys to even a pile of laundry, young children are very curious and often figure out very clever ways to access a window.

Read the window safety article.