Keep windows safe to protect kids
The arrival of spring is evident in many ways for David Schmitke. One sign of the changing seasons is the arrival of osprey, another is the longer days.“The other one is kids start falling out of windows,” said Schmitke, the public education coordinator for Clark County Fire District 6.It’s unclear how many children fall from windows in Clark County. The falls aren’t tracked by any one agency, and the calls to 911 are logged under various categories. But Schmitke doesn’t need hard numbers to know it happens far too often.“It is very, very common,” he said. “I guarantee you it will happen.”And the severity of injuries run the gamut, from broken limbs to concussions or more severe head injuries, Schmitke said.That’s why Fire District 6 is teaming up with Clark County Public Health to not only urge people to use safety devices on their windows but to distribute free window stops to anyone who needs them.“If we get some installed and keep some kids from falling, we’ve done our job,” said Anne Johnston, public health nurse.Safety devices that can prevent kids from pushing windows open more than 4 inches — the widest that windows should be open when children are present — will be available for pickup from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Fire District 6 headquarters, 8800 N.E. Hazel Dell Ave.The devices — made by baby product company KidCo — come in packs of two and will be available first-come, first-served. The fire district has about 70 sets to distribute; grant money was used to purchase the devices.