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Child's Death Prompts Window Blind Recall

About 677,300 IKEA and Green Mountain Vista window blinds and shades were recalled in the United States on Thursday after a young child choked to death.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said a 1-year-old girl from Greenwich, Conn., died in April when she got caught in the inner cord of a set of IKEA Roman blinds over her playpen.

The agency also received a report of a 2-year-old girl from Bristol, Conn., who nearly died in June on the beaded-chain loop hanging from a set of Green Mountain Vista shades. The girl's neck was deeply bruised, but she was saved by her older brother.

CPSC's Public Affairs Director Julie Vallese said if a consumer has a set of the blinds or shades in their home they should remove them immediately. "Absolutely. If you have small children in your home, the agency is recommending that you take them down, return them to IKEA and they will give you a full refund," She told co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez on The Early Show.

"Rollup blinds have a lot of cording to them," she said. "They can actually be a problem with this kind of cording, but also because these don't actually always roll up evenly and a child can get entangled inside. If you have a rollup blind, we're actually recommending that you just take them out of your home.

"There are many different kinds of window coverings available to parents and we're encouraging them to explore different options."

Vallese said it was not enough for parents to simply tie up the cord higher up, to try to keep it out of reach of children.

"Absolutely not. You know, it's really the job of a kid to explore, to jump, to play, to look out windows, so if you do have small children, you want to make sure that those cords are not accessible in any way. You really never know what a kid is going to do. So you really want to make sure that these kinds of cords just are not accessible to any children."

The recall includes about 670,000 IRIS and ALVINE Roman blinds, manufactured in India and distributed by IKEA Home Furnishings. They were sold at IKEA stores nationwide between July 2005 and June 2008. Another 4.8 million blinds were sold outside the country.

The blinds can be returned to any IKEA store for a full refund.

Also recalled are about 7,300 insulated blackout roller shades and insulated Roman shades manufactured in China by Green Mountain Vista Inc. The shades were sold around the country by Country Curtains, Plow & Hearth, The Linen Source, Sturbridge Yankee Workshop, Ann & Hope, The Sportsman's Guide,, The Curtain Shop of Maine, and the Solutions catalog. They were available between June 2005 and September 2008.

Green Mountain Vista shade owners should check to see if the tension device is attached. If not, contact the company for a free repair kit and installation instructions.

For more information on the Green Mountain Vista shades, call (800) 639-1728.

For more information:

  • Consumer Product Safety Commission: Recalls and Product Safety News
  • IKEA
  • Green Mountain Vista
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