Injury and death of children as a result of falls from windows are a tragic and preventable occurrence. The Australian Building Code has been updated in 2013 to establish regulations for the installation of windows with restricted openings in applications where there is a risk of injury or death from accidental falls. AWS supports this initiative and has undertaken extensive research and development to allow the supply and installation of compliant window systems that will reduce the risk of injury. When installing into applications which are deemed by the BCA to require the installation of guards or restricted openings, windows can be fitted with:
• Restricted opening chain winders
• Buffer stops
• Restricted opening latches
The Building Code of Australia requires restriction devices to be fitted and tested as outlined below. Apply a 250N force with a 125mm bullet shaped object to the most vulnerable point perpendicular to the sash opening of the window for a period of 10 seconds then remove. If the 125mm bullet shaped object passes completely through the opening at any point once the force is applied, the product would be deemed as a failure.
Barriers or locks are required to be fitted on operable windows in Early Childhood Centres and in habitable rooms of residential buildings (including apartments and multi-storey homes) where windows are more than two metres above the ground.
• Do all windows above the ground floor comply with BCA requirements for windows in elevated applications?
• In the event of an emergency, would windows fitted with guards/latches/locks be able to be opened to facilitate safe egress
• A flyscreen is not strong enough to stop a child from falling out of a window. Have you selected an appropriate and secure guard for your operable windows to prevent a fall?
• Are beds and other furniture kept away from windows so that children cannot climb up to windows?
• Are children taught to play away from windows?
• Are children always supervised when near windows?