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Toddler’s Death Prompts Another Recall of Window Blinds Posing Strangulation Hazard

By December 1, 2009July 18th, 2019Product Liability

As a St. Louis miniblinds injury attorney, I was disappointed to see that a child’s death has prompted yet another recall of a brand of window blinds. According to a Nov. 30 article in USA Today, two-year-old Thapelo Kwofe died in Maryland after he got tangled up in window cords. The newspaper said the incident prompted a safety alert by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the federal agency responsible for the safety of most consumer products. In the November alert, the CPSC recommended for the first time that parents, grandparents and others install cordless window treatments everywhere that children live or might visit. If this isn’t possible, the agency recommends cutting cords that form a loop, raising cords out of children’s reach and moving furniture away from windows.
The danger of window cords is so well established that the CPSC lists them among the top five dangers in the home. The agency estimates that one child a month dies by strangling in window coverings, and a spokesman said that manufacturers have recalled five million window treatments in the past few months. The problem stems from the cords that connect blind slats as well as the cords used to operate window treatments. Young children who don’t understand the danger can easily become entangled in the blind cords. Once they are, they are often unable to cry for help, which means adults in the next room may not notice until it’s too late. The CPSC has issued at least three safety alerts in the past, as well as two retrofitting programs in cooperation with the Window Covering Safety Council, an industry group. Unfortunately, those retrofitting programs did not always eliminate the danger, and the window covering industry did not stop making products with dangerous cords.
I hope this most recent safety alert changes that trend. Window blind strangulation accidents are easily preventable, yet we lose one American child a month this way. Parents certainly can and should take action of their own to prevent strangulation accidents, but manufacturers could easily fix the problem in newer treatments by changing their designs to eliminate loops and make strings hard for toddlers to reach. Like all manufacturers, window treatment manufacturers have a legal responsibility to offer only products that are safe to use for their intended purpose. When products don’t measure up, and someone is killed or seriously injured as a result, victims have the right to sue the manufacturer for all of the costs and damages the shoddy product caused. As a Missouri dangerous window covering attorney, I have handled numerous such cases on behalf of families who lost children or suffered serious injuries because of dangerous miniblinds.

Based in St. Louis, the Lowe Law Firm represents clients throughout Missouri and southern Illinois who were hurt by someone else’s negligence, carelessness or illegal behavior. That includes people who suffered serious injuries or lost a loved one due to defectively designed or manufactured consumer products like window blinds. In a lawsuit, families can claim compensation for the physical and emotional injuries stemming from such an accident, including compensation for pain, emotional trauma and any permanent disability or wrongful death. Just as importantly, our southern Illinois defective window blind lawyers also help clients claim money to pay all of the bills the accident caused, including past and future medical costs and any lost earnings.
If your family has suffered a serious accident because of window coverings or any other dangerous product, you should call the Lowe Law Firm to learn more about how we can help. To tell us your story and learn more about your rights at a free consultation, please contact us online or call 1-877-678-3400 today.