Harrison's Law

A coroner has called for a ban to be considered on blinds with looped cords after two toddlers from Staffordshire strangled themselves within five days of each other.

Three year old Harrison Joyce was watching his cartoons at his home in Lichfield on the 4th of February 2010 when his mum came in to find him tangled up in the chord.

Five days later 16 month old Lilian Bagnall-Lambe was killed in a similar incident in Stafford.

Coroner Andrew Haigh recorded virdicts of accidental death in both cases, he believes that the Government must look again at existing safety regulations and said: "If they are not effective, then there should be a complete ban so far as cord blinds are concerned. There should be a realistic prospect, I would have thought, that there's no need actually for looped cord blinds."

Harrison Joyce's father Scott told Heart their lives "will never be the same again" following the death of their son.

Detective Inspector Vicky Roberts, from Staffordshire Police, said: "These heart-breaking accidents highlight the dangers that are present in homes.

"It is vital that parents do all they can to make their properties as safe as possible for their young children. We would urge them to go around their home looking at all potential risks and thinking about how to reduce the danger posed by what may, on the surface, appear to be innocuous items."

Harrison's Law

It's now Harrison's families ongoing commitment to get these type of chorded systems banned from manufacture in the world.

They've set up a campaign called Harrisons Law in which they're getting a petition together and taking it to Parliament to get the law changed, and these blinds banned.

Harrison Joyce These types of chords have been banned from production in the USA following the deaths of more than 350 children between 1985 and 1995.

They now want the United Kingdom to cease the manufacture of these and follow in the footsteps of America.

Roger Vincent, spokesman for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (Rospa), said: "In an ideal world manufacturers wouldn't produce blinds and curtains with looped cords. In the US they haven't been producing them for 12 or 13 years now.

"But even if that is addressed by the manufacturers there will be millions of these in homes.

"It is important that tragedies like this highlight that children can get their heads into these loops from time to time and can be killed.

"Our advice is that parents cut the loops on the cords and try to keep them out of the reach of children."

Mr Vincent added: "We estimate there are around one or two a year in the UK where children become entangled.

"Parents and those looking after children need to be aware of these hazards."

Recently Played Tracks

On Radio: James Merritt

1am - 6am

Text 'HEART' to 82122

James Merritt

On TV: Merry Quiz-mas!

2am - 4am

Watch heart TV

  • DJ Snake & Justin Bieber Let Me Love You

    02:31

    iTunes

  • Kideko & George Kwali CRANK IT (WOAH!) FT. NADIA ROSE

    02:28

  • Sam Feldt SHOW ME LOVE FT. KIMBERLY ANNE

    02:25

    iTunes

  • Alex Clare TOO CLOSE

    02:21

    iTunes

More On Heart