The Consumer Product Safety Commission and the window blind industry are recalling virtually every Roman blind and roller shade on the market — around 50 million sets — because the cords pose a strangulation hazard to children.
Massive recall is due to the cords posing a strangulation hazard to children.
Five children have died and another 16 have nearly strangled in the cords of the Roman shades and three children’s deaths have been linked to roll-up blinds, which is why the CSPC negotiated the massive recall. But the agency said it’s frustrated that it was necessary since the products should have been safer in the first place.
The CPSC urged owners of Roman blinds or roll-up shades to call the Window Covering Safety Council for information on the repair kit at (800) 506-4636 or visit www.windowcoverings.org. Consumers can also buy roll-up blinds with a breakaway device that gives way if a child is caught in the cord, or use blinds that do not have cords at all.
In addition to the CPSC’s recall, some major retailers are issuing recalls of their own. Walmart issued recalls for 500,000 Roman shades and 600,000 roll-up blinds. JCPenny recalled more than 2.2 million Roman shades and about 340 roll-up blinds. The Pottery Barn recalled about 305,000 Roman shades and 45,000 roller shades.