PEORIA (WEEK) — An 18-month-old girl died after getting tangled in cords of window blinds. Peoria County Coroner, Jamie Harwood, said it’s rare, but it does happen across the country.
“They’re devastated, you know, they’re absolutely devastated,” said Harwood.
Parent’s of the 18-month-old girl found her unresponsive Saturday night. She was rushed to the hospital, but pronounced dead less than an hour later. Harwood said she died of strangulation.
“This is not a new occurrence but it is new here in Peoria,” said Harwood.
Sungard Window Fashions Manager, Alishia Green-Jeffries, said warning labels are all over window blinds for this very reason.
“That’s where our job is to come in and go around and say, ‘Hey have you thought about adding cord cleats,’ here, ‘Have you thought about more importantly doing an upgrade to where you’re not having to mess with cords at all,’ because it can happen in a blink of an eye no matter how safe your house is,” said Green-Jeffries.
She said over the past 10 years manufacturers had came out with new, cordless blinds and safety features to add to older models. She even offers those features for free.
“All the window treatment manufacturer’s have come out with this, the cord cleat. So what these are, you just screw them right into the window frame you take your cord and you rap it around the cord cleat,” said Green-Jeffries.
The American Academy of Pediatrics said nearly 300 toddlers died in incidents like this between 1990 and 2015.
“I don’t think there’s blame to be put anywhere tragedies happen, but we’re able to use it to this incident right now to let the public know that many blinds, with strings are unsafe, but there are safety things that you can do.”
Peoria Police are working what is now believed to be a tragic accident.
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