Number of kids rushed to BC Children’s after fall from windows doubles

Fifteen kids were brought to BC Children’s Hospital from May-September 2017 after these falls

The number of children treated at BC Children’s Hospital after falling from a window or balcony more than doubled during the warmer months in 2017, compared to the previous year.

That’s according to new numbers released Friday by the BC Trauma Registry.

Fifteen children were brought to the hospital’s emergency room between May and September 2017, compared to seven during the same months the year before.

“As the warmer season approaches, I strongly urge parents and caregivers to take precautions to ensure their windows and balconies are safely secure to prevent tragedies and keep our children safe,” said Dr. Ash Singhal, pediatric neurosurgeon and medical director of BC Children’s trauma program.

Between 2010 and 2016, 132 children were treated at trauma centres across B.C. after falling from a window or balcony, with about 85 per cent of them between the ages of one and six.

READ MORE: Child taken to hospital after falling out window of Abbotsford home

READ MORE: Child falls out of window in Langley City

BC Emergency Health Service paramedic Marilyn Oberg said it takes just “a little bit of safeguarding work” to keep children safe when the windows and doors are open.

So far this month, already two children have been reported to have from a window in the Lower Mainland.

A child in Langley fell from the top floor of a four-storey building and managed to land in some bushes. A two-year-old boy in Abbotsford was found by emergency crews lying on concrete eight feet below the window of a home. Both children survived

“It’s tragic that each year as we get into the warmer months, we see young children falling from windows and balconies,” Oberg said.

BC Children’s Hospital and emergency officials are offering tips for parents and caregivers to prevent falls:

  • Don’t underestimate a child’s mobility. Children begin climbing before they can walk.
  • Move furniture and household items away from windows to discourage children from climbing to peer out.
  • Remember window screens will not prevent children from falling through.
  • Install window guards on windows above the ground level. These act as a gate in front of the window.
  • Alternatively, fasten your windows so that they cannot open more than 10 centimetres. Children can fit through spaces as small as 12 centimetres wide.
  • Ensure there is a safe release option for your windows in case of a house fire.
  • Do not leave children unattended on balconies or decks. Move furniture or planters away from the edges to keep kids from climbing up and over.
  • Talk to your children about the dangers of opening and playing near windows, particularly on upper floors of the home or in a high-rise dwelling.

@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Ongoing dangers caused by flooding

Regional District Okanagan-Similkameen reminds residents of dangers posed by flooding

B.C. Interior flood risk diminishing

Snowmelt receding but rainfall impact remains a concern

Fair promotes sustainability, environmental awareness

Summerland students to hold event on May 27 in Memorial Park

Blast from the past

Ministry of Transportation shows a neat photo from Highway 3 in the South Okanagan-Similkameen

Study looking at declining mule deer population

Southern Interior mule deer project tracking deer movement and health

Vancouver Island girl scores with winning song for BC Summer Games

‘Colours’ is a perfect theme for 2018 BC Summer Games

B.C. pipeline goes ahead despite scrapped Pacific Northwest LNG

NEB approves amendment for $1.4-billion natural gas North Montney Mainline Project

Update: Wildfire northwest of Kamloops jumps from 60 to 800 hectares

Ground crews and aircraft are responding to an estimated 50 hectare wildfire approximately 55 kilometers northwest of Kamloops, near the Deadman Vidette Road.

Feds limit chinook fishery to help killer whale recovery

Chinook is main food source for only 76 southern residents killer whales left

B.C. mom who died just before daughter’s wedding wanted family to be happy: twin

Ann Wittenberg was pulled into the ocean while on a surf board in Tofino last weekend

Courtenay-Alberni MP calls for lifeguards at popular surf spot near Tofino

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is defending its decision to cancel the surf guard program.

Harvey Weinstein to surrender in sex misconduct probe: officials

Would be first criminal charge against Weinstein since scores of women came forward

Media are not an arm of the police, Vice lawyer tells Supreme Court hearing

Ben Makuch challenges Ontario Court of Appeal ruling that he must give materials for stories to RCMP

B.C. launches plan to tackle doctor shortage, emergency room congestion

John Horgan aims to set up regional primary care networks in a ‘team-based’ approach

Most Read