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2-Year-Olds Death By Cord Strangulation Leads to Recall of 454,000 BlindXpress Window Blinds

In the wake of the 2009 Michigan child death of a 2-year-old girl who was strangled in a vertical blind cord’s loop, the US Consumer Production Safety Commission is recalling 315,000 horizontal blinds and 139,000 vertical blinds, both custom-made, by BlindXpress. The blinds were sold in Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan from January 1995 through December 2011.
The custom-made vertical blinds come with an adjustment cord that shapes into a loop and doesn’t attach to the floor or wall. The loop may have a weighted device at its bottom. Meantime, the horizontal cords lack an inner cord device to keep someone from pulling out the cords, which can pose a strangulation risk should one of the cords get out and a child were to get entangled in it. The CPSC is pressing consumers to stop using the window blinds right away. They should also get in touch with the Window Covering Safety Council (WCSC) to ask for your free repair kit.
Over the past few years, our products liability law firm has blogged about the dangers posed by window blinds and their accompanying cords. According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, most blind cord deaths involve kids ages 16 months to three years. Most of these victims tend to be toddlers. (It is not unusual for a toddler to have a head that is proportionately heavier than his/her body. Add active mobility and his/her not fully developed muscle control to the equation, and it could hard for him/her to get free in the event of entanglement in a window blind cord.) Young children are more prone to suffocation than older kids and adults.
Industry critics blame manufacturers for not doing enough to make window blinds safer. Eliminating all cords from window blinds is one solution. Yet cordless window blinds are not just harder to make, they are also more expensive to buy. Such costs are reportedly leading window blind makers to create less expensive options, such as blinds with covered or retractable cords. It doesn’t help that the standards for window blinds are voluntary and not mandatory. Also, even with such efforts, figures show that approximately one child window blind suffocation happens each month.
Child Products Liability
If window blinds caused your child’s strangulation death, do not hesitate to contact The Gilbert Law Group to request your free consultation. With over 200 US children having died from window blind cord accidents in the last two decades, this is clearly a problem that has not gone away. Our window defects lawyers know how devastating it can be to discover that your child’s life was cut short or irrevocably altered because of a defective or unsafe product.
Death of Child Prompts Recall of Window Blinds by Blind Xpress, CPSC, September 6, 2012
Concern Grows Over Window Blind Safety, The New York Times, April 20, 2011
Parents for Window Blind Safety
Window Covering Safety Council (WCSC)