Window coverings with cords and chains including curtains, shades, blinds, traverse rods, tracks or similar.can cause injury and death to young children and babies if they become wrapped around their necks.
Child safety guidelines
A baby or young child can become entangled in curtain or blind cords in seconds. This can happen when cords are too long or end in a loop. If a child slips, moves quickly or plays with a cord, the cord can act like a noose and strangle the child. Babies can reach through cot slats, grab a nearby blind or curtain cord and pull it into the cot and around their necks. Young children can accidentally strangle on dangling cords after climbing onto a bed or other pieces of furniture. Follow these simple steps to keep blind and curtain cords out of children's reach, particularly children under 6 years old:
- Keep children away from all cords – move furniture, cots and beds away.
- Check all blind and curtain cords – both at home and when away on holidays. Make sure they are out of children's reach.
- Make loose cords safe – use safety devices or cut the cord loop and attach a tassel at the end of each strand.
- Choose safe blinds and curtains – check new curtains and blinds have warning labels and secure the cords out of reach.
Important - If you are buying new made-to-measure blinds or curtains, ask the supplier to show you what safety features are available and make sure you use them.
Mandatory blind and curtain cord requirements
From 1 January 2015, a second national mandatory standard requires people or companies who install corded internal window coverings, in trade or commerce, to bring installations in line with existing requirements for suppliers of these products. Go to the <blinds and curtains page> on the <Product Safety Australia website> for more information.
Steps to cutting blind cord loops
Before you start, check that your blinds will still work with cut cords and that it won't void your warranty.
- Cut looped cords on the blind, curtain or venetians, just above the tassel.
- Remove any tassel and equaliser buckle.
- Attach a new tassel to each of the pull-cord ends.
- Knot the cord to hold the tassel (see illustration below).
Note: Pull-cords on certain vertical blinds or curtains require a continuous loop to work and cannot be cut. For these types of blinds or curtains, you will need to install a safety device that will secure the cords out of reach from children.
Need more information?
Contact your local blind supplier or hardware store to find out what safety devices are suitable for your blinds. Also go to the blinds and curtains page on the Product Safety Australia website for more information or the Kidsafe NSW website for a range of information to help parents make their home safe for young children.
If you become aware of an unsafe situation or item, whether or not anyone has been injured, you should alert the supplier about the issue. You can also report it by lodging a complaint on our website or via the Product Safety Australia website.