Alarming Statistics For Children Falling From Windows

Author: Nationwide Children's Hospital
Published: 2011/08/22 - Updated: 2024/03/02
Publication Type: Informative
Contents: Summary - Main - Related Publications

Synopsis: Information on making windows safe from children falling from high level windows, includes statistics on window fall related injuries. Over 190 children fall from windows each year after gaining access by climbing on furniture placed near the window. There were many children in our study who pushed a screen out of a window and then fell from the window.

Main Digest

Approximately 14 children treated in hospital emergency departments for window fall-related injuries every day in the U.S. Windows are a part of everyday life for children in the United States. While many parents know that windows can be a hazard for their child, they may not be aware just how often things can take a turn for the worse.

A new study conducted by researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital found that approximately 5,200 children and adolescents 17years of age and younger were treated in U.S. emergency departments each year from 1990 through 2008 for injuries sustained due to falls from windows. This translates to approximately 14 children being injured as the result of a window fall every day in the U.S.

The study, released on August 22, 2011 and appeared in the September 2011 print issue of Pediatrics, found that children 0 to 4 years of age were especially vulnerable, not only accounting for a majority (65 percent) of the injuries, but also having a higher rate of serious injury resulting in hospitalization or death. Children who fell from a height of 3 stories or above or who landed on a hard surface, such as concrete or brick, were also at increased risk for serious injury. Overall, the most common injuries were to the head and face region (49 percent), and the most frequent injury diagnoses were soft tissue injury (41 percent) and brain/head injury (26 percent).

"Window fall injuries are serious. In fact, one out of every four children in our study was hospitalized as a result of their injury," said the study's senior author Gary Smith, MD, director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital. "We know from successful programs in New York City and Boston [community education programs re: window fall prevention] that child injuries due to falls from windows can be prevented. We need to do a better job of protecting our children from these types of serious injuries."

In this study, more than 190 children fell from windows each year after gaining access to the window by climbing on furniture placed near the window. Therefore, furniture should be moved away from windows to help keep young children safe.

"In addition, it is important for parents to understand that window screens will not prevent a child from falling out of a window," said Dr. Smith, also a professor of pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. "There were many children in our study who pushed a screen out of a window and then fell from the window."

To prevent injuries from window falls:

This is the first study to use a nationally representative sample to examine injuries associated with window falls that were treated in U.S. emergency departments. Data for this study were obtained from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), which is operated by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. The NEISS dataset provides information on consumer product-related and sports and recreation-related injuries treated in hospital emergency departments across the country.

The Center for Injury Research and Policy (CIRP) of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital works globally to reduce injury-related pediatric death and disabilities. With innovative research as its core, CIRP works to continually improve the scientific understanding of the epidemiology, biomechanics, prevention, acute treatment and rehabilitation of injuries. CIRP serves as a pioneer by translating cutting edge injury research into education, policy and advances in clinical care.

Attribution/Source(s):

This quality-reviewed publication pertaining to our Accidents and Disability section was selected for circulation by the editors of Disabled World due to its likely interest to our disability community readers. Though the content may have been edited for style, clarity, or length, the article "Alarming Statistics For Children Falling From Windows" was originally written by Nationwide Children's Hospital, and submitted for publishing on 2011/08/22 (Edit Update: 2024/03/02). Should you require further information or clarification, Nationwide Children's Hospital can be contacted at the nationwidechildrens.org website. Disabled World makes no warranties or representations in connection therewith.

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Cite This Page (APA): Nationwide Children's Hospital. (2011, August 22). Alarming Statistics For Children Falling From Windows. Disabled World. Retrieved April 14, 2024 from www.disabled-world.com/disability/accidents/window-falls.php

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