By Ruthie Fierberg
April 11, 2014
New PSA: Protect Your Child From a Window Blind Cord Accident 34736

It might surprise you, but seemingly harmless window blinds could pose a serious risk to your child's safety. Window blind cords (pull cords and inner cords) pose a strangulation threat, even if you have tied them "up high."

Parents for Window Blind Safety published the PSA "In An Instant" via YouTube earlier today. Linda Kaiser of St. Louis, Missouri, who founded the advocacy organization with her husband Matt, hopes to increase awareness about how easily and quickly these tragedies can happen. "There are just a lot of people out there [with a] misconception of how these accidents occur," she said. "We're trying to bring to life how fast they occur—the fact that they can occur in the same room with a parent."

Already in 2014, there have been four deaths in the U.S. from children becoming entangled in window blind cords. In the past 10 years there have been 226 accidents of this kind resulting in 112 deaths and 114 strangulation injuries. Parents for Window Blind Safety is a nonprofit dedicated to ending preventable deaths and injuries from window blind accidents by providing the most up-to-date facts, raising awareness, and working to create safer standards in the industry. Founded in 2002, the network also serves as a support system for parents who have lost a child, as the Kaisers lost their daughter, Cheyenne Rose.

The video is an emotional reenactment and important reminder of the potential danger in our homes. It also serves as a reminder that safety kits from manufacturers may not provide adequate protection. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission over 40 percent of accidents occur on products that complied with the ANSI national safety standard. These accidents are preventable by going cordless with all window blinds.

Watch the PSA produced by RedCastle Productions here:

Photograph: Yuliya Estratenko/