NEWS | May 2, 2017

Warmer weather, open windows raise risk of kids falling

Tips to help keep children safe


About 5,000 children are treated nationally in hospital emergency departments each year for window fall-related injuries. These falls and injuries tend to be more common during the spring and summer months, since people tend to open their windows during warm weather.

Photo of child looking out window
Children are more likely to fall from windows during the warm spring and summer months.

According to Melissa Vanover, fourth-year UC Davis general surgery resident, the fall rate is highest among children younger than 5 years of age. These young children are also at the highest risk for sustaining serious injuries, including traumatic brain injuries.

The pediatric emergency department at UC Davis Children's Hospital sees about 40 cases of children falling from windows each year. Window screens are not designed to stop a child from falling, reminded Vanover.

Experts recommend the following tips for families:
• Keep windows closed and locked where children are playing.
• Install window guards on all windows on the second story or higher.
• Install locks on sliding windows.
• Move furniture away from windows so children cannot climb on sofas, chairs or tables to access windows.
• Do not leave windows open more than four inches.
• Do not leave young children at home unsupervised.

View ABC10's 60-second spot about window safety, featuring Melissa Vanover. Watch Melissa Vanover's interview on Sac&Co. this month.

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UC Davis Children's Hospital is the Sacramento region's only nationally ranked, comprehensive hospital providing care for infants, children, adolescents and young adults with primary, subspecialty and critical care. It includes the Central Valley's only pediatric emergency department and level I pediatric trauma center, which offers the highest level of care for its critically ill patients, as well as the West Coast's only level I children's surgery center. The 129-bed children's hospital includes the state-of-the-art 49-bed neonatal and 24-bed pediatric intensive care and pediatric cardiac intensive care units. For more information, visit