About 5,000 children in the U.S. each year are hospitalized after falling out of windows. These injuries are more common during the spring and summer months, since people tend to open their windows during warm weather.
According to Melissa Vanover, UC Davis general surgery resident, children younger than 5 years of age are the most likely to fall from windows. These young children are also at the highest risk for suffering serious injuries, including traumatic brain injuries.
At UC Davis Children's Hospital, about 40 children are hospitalized after falling from windows each year. Vanover reminds everyone that window screens are not designed to stop a child from falling.
Six tips to prevent children from falling out of windows
• Keep windows closed and locked where children are playing.
• Do not leave windows open more than four inches.
• Install stops on sliding windows to limit how far they open.
• Install window guards on all windowson the second story or higher.
• Move sofas, chairs, tables and other furniture away from windows so children cannot climb them to access windows.
• Do not leave young children at home unsupervised.
ABC10's video about window safety, featuring Melissa Vanover
Sac&Co. interview with Melissa Vanover: Dangers of Window Falls for Kids
Stop at 4 Campaign: Child Window Fall Prevention
SafeKids.org: Tips for Preventing Falls from Windows