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8th November 2011

Phantom recognise safety is paramount

The law regarding blinds and their cords is set to change after tragedy struck in Plymouth over the summer.

Caden Laine, a 21-month old boy from Plymouth was killed in his bedroom when trapped by a cord attached to a window blind. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (Rospa) said at least 15 toddlers had been killed in accidents involving blinds in Britain since 1999.

At the time, the coroner urged parents to be aware of the dangers of blinds and now the European Union are making changes to the legal specifications of blinds and their cords. The legislation isn't expected to be in place until 2012 but the BBSA are encouraging all members to plan for the changes now to stop anymore needless accidents. The British Blind and Shutter Association have produced a video to promote safety and highlight the dangers of some blinds.

All blinds fitted with a cord must, by law be fitted with a cleat. This allows the cord to be wrapped up and tied away to avoid any such accidents. However, this legal requirement only falls to a fitter of blinds and a homeowner can easily choose to remove it or not install one when fitting blinds themselves.

Currently cords on blinds are not of a set length but plans are likely to go through resulting in all blinds cords being 20cm or less in length. This length has been recognised to be too short to cause harm through asphyxiation should a child become entangled in the cord.

Phantom Screens blackout blinds are cordless and operate by a finger pull bar along the bottom of the blackout roller blind. If a blackout blind is too high, we can provide a telescopic tool that extends from 15cm to 100cm that will latch onto the finger pull and enable you to shut blinds that are out of reach without the need for a cord.