CHILD WINDOW SAFETY LOCK DEVICES

Each year, it is reported that around 50+ children fall from windows or balconies in Australia. Many suffer serious injuries or worse, these falls can be fatal. Is your Child Safe?

Safety tips:

Here are some simple tips to help keep kids safe:

  • Don’t be fooled by fly screens, they are designed to keep insects out, not your kids in.
  • Install window safety devices on all above ground floor windows within a child's reach. When the safety device is engaged, it will not open more than 12.5cm.
  • Keep furniture away from windows and the edge of balconies to prevent children climbing up and falling off. Beware of light furniture that children can move around.
  • If you rent, you must get written permission from your landlord before you drill into the window panel. Landlords cannot refuse permission unless they have a very good reason.

Child Window Safety Lock Device Law Requirements

All strata buildings in NSW must be fitted with devices that lock the window opening at less than 12.5cm. This applies to openable windows that are two metres above the ground outside and within 1.7 metres from the floor inside.
Owners corporations must have devices installed on all applicable common property windows by 13 March 2018. The safety devices must be robust and childproof. The device must also be able to withstand a force equal to 25 kilograms.

FAQS:

1. Is there an alternative to locks?

    The alternative is security screens, such as bars or grills on the windows so long as they have gaps less than 12.5cm.
Flyscreens don’t comply unless they are capable of resisting the very strong outward pressure which would prevent a child falling through.

2. When do the window safety devices need to be installed?

    The 13 March 2018 is the owners corporations deadline. Lot owners can install window safety devices in their property at any time. They need to let the owners corporation know. Tenants must get written permission from their landlord before installing locks that require drilling. Landlords cannot refuse a tenant's request unless they have a very good reason.

3. Will this mean the windows will never be able to open?

    No. A window lock that allows the window to be fully opened, fully closed and also locked at less than 12.5cm, complies with the legislation.

4. How do I know if a window safety device is compliant?

    Besides restricting the window from opening more than 12.5 cm or more the device must also be able to withstand a force equal to 25 kilograms. Check the packaging on the locks or contact the seller or manufacturer for more information. Alternatively you can Contact Us & we can book you an appointment to have one of our tradesman come out & see you.  

5. My window forms part of a swimming pool barrier, do the window safety requirements still apply?

    Windows that form part of the pool barrier need to lock at 10cm. (See below for more information on swimming pool safety requirements)

Windows In Pool Barriers

     If you have windows that form part of a pool barrier, they must have

  • a locking device or a security screen fixed to the building that prevents them from opening more than 10cm.

     *If it does not satisfy this requirement, you will need to install a locking device or security screen that reduces the gap to 10cm or less.

Each year, around 50 children fall from windows or balconies in Australia. Many suffer serious injuries or worse, these falls can be fatal.
Safety tips:
 Here are some simple tips to help keep kids safe: 

  • Don’t be fooled by fly screens, they are designed to keep insects out, not your kids in.
  • Install window safety devices on all above ground floor windows within a child's reach. When the safety device is engaged, it will not open more than 12.5cm.
  • Keep furniture away from windows and the edge of balconies to prevent children climbing up and falling off. Beware of light furniture that children can move around.
  • If you rent, you must get written permission from your landlord before you drill into the window panel. Landlords cannot refuse permission unless they have a very good reason.




Strata Schemes Management Regulation 2016
Current version for 18 December 2017 to date (accessed 28 November 2018 at 5:00pm AEST)

Part 4 Clause 30 Window Safety Devices

 (1) A building in a strata scheme is a building to which section 118 of the Act applies if the building contains lots used for        residential purposes.
 (2) A window within any such building is a window to which section 118 of the Act applies if:
       (a) it is a window within the meaning of the Building Code of Australia, and
       (b) it can be opened, and
       (c) the lowest level of the window opening is less than 1.7 metres above the surface of any internal floor that abuts                the wall of which it forms part, and
       (d) that internal floor is 2 metres or more above the ground surface, or any external surface, below the window                      that abuts the wall, and
       (e) it is a window on common property to which access can be gained from a residence in a strata scheme or a                         window on any part of the building that is part of a residence.

 (3) A screen, lock or any other device is a complying window safety device for the purposes of section 118 of the Act if it:
       (a) is capable of restricting the opening of a window so that a sphere having a diameter of 125 millimetres or more                  cannot pass through the window opening, and
       (b) is capable of resisting an outward horizontal action of 250 newtons, and
       (c) has a child resistant release mechanism, in the case of a device that can be removed, overridden or unlocked.
 (4) In this clause:
       Building Code of Australia has the same meaning as it has in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

Part 4 Clause 31  Notification by owners of window safety devices

An owner of a lot in a strata scheme who installs a window safety device under section 118 of the Act must give written notice of the installation to the owners corporation within 7 days after completion of the installation.

Note.  Section 262 of the Act sets out the manner in which a document is to be served on an owners corporation.


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