We're getting ready to move into our new house (well, it's old but YKWIM) and I've just realised today when I went over for an inspection that all of the upstairs windows are really dangerous - they all start at about thigh-height and the glass panes are really thin - and are just ripe for a small child to break and fall through.
Has anyone else who lives in a two-storey house had to make their windows child-safe, and if so, what did you do? Without doing any research, all I can think of is to get that thick safety glass installed or put up some kind of bars (but maybe that'd be dangerous in case we had to escape during a fire or something).
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12-08-2012 16:10 #1
Advice on how to make upstairs windows child-safe
12-08-2012 16:35 #2
I have this problem too as my house is 2 story. The glass isn't thin but the screens are really thin and dodgy with no mesh and virtually fall out if you give them a push. I will be looking at getting Crimsafe screens on visible windows in the main living area and just mesh security screens on the windows you don't notice so much.
13-08-2012 06:43 #3Senior Member
- Join Date
- Feb 2012
- Sydney NSW
Hi there, we have a similar issue- our place has huge 1970's aluminium windows that start thigh level and take up the whole wall- and normal flimsy flyscreens. We use little screw on window locks on the top and bottom- you put them on yourself- you can get them at Bunnings- we place ours so the window can't open more than about 8cm- they are removed by unscrewing them. we have safety glass in our glass sliding doors, but not in the windows. As for the glass itself, there may be some sort of plastic you can stick on to the existing glass (like contact ??) so it doesn't shatter in shards in the event of breakage, but I don't know what it is called. Again, maybe ask at Bunnings or glass company like Obriens? I agree with you- I have avoided bars and so on as I want to be able to get out if required
13-08-2012 13:08 #4
Thanks girls. I ended up calling Kidsafe and they said "Surely safety glass [the laminated stuff] is enough...?". Then they suggested I call the state building and planning department to ask what the current regulations are for upper floor windows. This turned out to be a great idea. I rang them and they said, "Yep - safety glass...but you should really talk to a building certifier".
I had no idea what a building certifier did until today but apparently they're engineers who are insured to give advice on building matters and if they're wrong, you can sue them, essentially. So I rang this guy and he said off the record that having all the current glass replaced with safety glass will do the trick. It can still be broken but it won't fall out and they kids can't fall through it. He said that to escape during a fire, just kick out the window pane that opens (ours are awning-style windows that lever outwards from the bottom). He also said make sure the winding opener can't be opened more than 125mm, or have it shortened to only open 100mm, which is what Kidsafe recommends (and the 'Kids Can't Fly' campaign). So, that's a relief to know!
The other thing I discovered is that there are some special child safety bars called 'Guardian Angel window guards' that you can order online - you install them yourselves (they screw into the inner window frame) and to remove them in the event of a fire etc, you just press these two emergency release buttons together. They're not cheap, though.
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