Child Safety: Window Blind and Shade Design Standards 2024

Each year in the U.S., an average of nine children ages five and under die from strangulation by cords used to operate drapes, shades, various types of blinds and other window treatments. In addition, scores of children are injured – in some cases, permanently – in these accidents. Pets also fall victim to this hidden hazard.

But this hazard is being addressed. Victor shade hunter douglas blinds st louis child safety standards

As of June 1, 2024 new standards designed to eliminate many of the potential hazards presented by window treatments will go into effect across the U.S. These standards, developed and established by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Window Covering Manufacturers Association (WMCA) cover all window treatments manufactured and/or sold in the U.S.

In short, the new ANIS/WMCA standards eliminate cords, looped or open, that can tangle around the necks of small children or pets, causing strangulation injuries or death. In addition, children and pets entangled in these cords have been injured when the cord was pulled with enough force to cause a window treatment to fall from its wall mounts.

The new standards dictate that:

  • Woodfaux woodand metal blinds will no longer include cords to raise and lower the treatments, instead using either motorized, cordless lift systems.
  • Wood and faux wood treatments will be tilted using rotating wands rather than corded systems.
  • Allhoneycomb shades use a cordless system at no additional charge.
  • Woven Wood products no longer include looped cords, instead using single cords which lengthen or shorten, depending upon the treatment being open, partially open or drawn shut.
  • Woven Wood vertical drapery now use rotating wand systems only – corded operations have been eliminated entirely.
  • Skyline products no longer use cords of any type, instead using rotating wands.

While all new products sold by Victor Shade (and other U.S. retailers) meet the ANSI and WCMA standards, we know many homes have window treatments that predate the new standards and may not be in compliance with them. Recognizing the potential hazard these older treatments may pose, we recommend that you look over these blinds, shades, shutter and draperies to determine if they pose a hazard. If you’re uncertain as to their safety, we urge you to contact us for more information or an inspection of your existing window treatments.

In some cases, these window treatments may be in compliance with the new standards, while others may be modified to comply. Regardless, safety is paramount, and it’s best to avoid taking chances when a quick call, inspection or possible modification can prevent tragedy.

We are here to help!

We offer years of expertise with window treatments in addition to scores of high-quality blinds, shades, shutters and custom window treatments. Our installation and experienced décor experts can help you through the decision-making process, step-by-step. Visit our new showroom – located at 11477 Page Service Drive, St. Louis, MO 63146 – the perfect place to shop for window treatments of all types, or schedule a consultation with our team. Quality matters, especially to the discerning customer. Let us show you why our window treatments will make a difference for you, your home, or your business.