Instructables

Child Proof Your Windows

video Child Proof Your Windows
Perhaps the most imortant Instructable I'll ever publish.

It is about children falling from buildings.

In the United States alone, 5,000 children were admitted to hospitals after falling out of buildings in 2011.  Not all of these children died, but the terror of falling several stories and the grief, guilt and pain these children and their families have to live with cannot be put into words.

I have been monitoring the figures of this catastrophe for years.  The numbers are not declining.  They are rising, and will continue to do so.

if the Instructable community is as good as I think it is, we may begin to shine daylight on corporate indifference, a hidden shame and the plight of a large number of people.

The window companies have done their part.  They've placed stickers on their windows warning people to keep children away from them.  The standard practice for any industry that places profit ahead of reality.

My task is done...  I've abandoned all U.S. and Canadian patents on the device I show in the video... My gift to the world.

Yours will be to make this Instructible viral enough to get people to notice.  I am also throwing down the gauntlet for anyone who can make a better device, or one for different types of windows (for whatever reason, sliding windows are one of the worse for children).

Please watch the video and please check into http://www.childreninfreefall.org/

Thank you.

Kiteman1 year ago
Do you have any data regarding the number people who survived fires because they escaped from, or were rescued through, windows?

(What is that peculiar metal spiral for anyway? I've never seen it as part of a window's construction in the UK.)
bfk (author)  Kiteman1 year ago
I don't have that data, however, there's some issues with certain devices and suggestions by manufacturers for child safety that can limit the ability of rescue workers to save people. bars over windows, either to keep people out or children in is probably the worse offender. Locks that prevent windows from opening more than 4" can also prevent a panicked person from opening a window wide enough to escape (firemen don't care if the window is locked or not... They'll break it). Windows need to be openable by people, including children. Here in the states, laws require bedroom windows to be a certain size so people and firemen with Scott Packs can get in and out. Any safety device also needs to allow the window to operate normally. A terrified child will not think to break a window to escape.

What metal spiral are you talking about? If it's the part that's inside the jamb of the window in the video, it's a spiral balance and you do have them in the UK, but chances are, they're hidden beneath a cover and out of sight. There are only three other types of balances for hung windows I'm aware of, block and tackle (line), Constant Force (or coil spring balance) and the original counterweight balance. Casements are more popular in your neck of the woods and of course, don't use balances, but in the U.S., the hung window is the most common style of window, so we use all types of balances.
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