Family urges parents to install window guards after son nearly d - KPTV - FOX 12

Family urges parents to install window guards after son nearly died in window fall

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Window guard used to prevent children or pets from falling out a window. (KPTV) Window guard used to prevent children or pets from falling out a window. (KPTV)
VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -

The warm weather will have people opening up windows and breathing in that fresh air.  But, there's a warning for families with small children.  

With temperatures forecast to hit the 80’s this week, Becca Keen Cunningham is doing her part to make sure all parents know how to protect their kids from falling out of an open window. 

The Vancouver mother almost lost her own son to a fall, years ago.  

Keen Cunningham says she put her son Thomas, then 3, down for a nap in his room. When she left, he wound up getting up onto a window seat and fell out of the open second story window.

“It’s a very lonely place when you don’t know if your kid is going to live,” said Becca Keen Cunningham. “So, my heart breaks every time I hear of another kid falling out of a window.”

Thomas suffered a traumatic brain injury.  He doesn’t remember much about what happened that day. His recovery is now five years in the making.

“I had to work really hard,” said 9-year-old Thomas. “Doctors said when I got out I wasn’t going to be able to eat, or talk, or walk on my own.”

The third-grader defied the odds though and is now thriving.

“I feel lucky,” he added.

Becca wrote a children’s book based on what her family endured called "If Kids Could Float: A Window Fall Prevention Story"

She hopes to prevent anyone else from going through what her family did.  She’s made sure copies are in libraries and hospitals all across the region.

“It’s so hard as a parent to convey the terror you feel if you don’t know if your kids going to live and so if there’s anything we can do that would keep even one parent from having to feel that, then well do it and well keep doing it,” said Becca Keen Cunningham.

Thomas still has his same room and wakes up to that window every day. Only now, there’s a window guard on it.  Something he hopes parents everywhere install for their kids too.

“I’d be happy because then they’d have absolutely no chance of falling out of a window,” said Thomas.  

April 3 – 9, 2016 is National Window Safety Week. Tips to keep kids safe include:

Keep furniture and anything a child can climb away from windows. Children have climbed on furniture, toys, and laundry and fallen out of a window.

Keep play away from windows and enforce the rule. Play one or two steps away from any window.

Install window stops or window guards on windows that are 72 or more inches from the ground.  Make sure they can be removed by an adult (in case of fire or other emergency).

For more information visit: http://www.stopat4.com/

Copyright 2016 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.
 

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