Window safety devices in strata

Windows are a very desirable feature in any property, but they can also pose a safety risk. Unsupervised children can open a window and fall through the opening and injure themselves. As many as 50 children fall through windows every year, which led to the government taking action and introducing regulations to prevent these accidents. The body made changes to the Building Code and also introduced changes in Strata Schemes Management Act. These amendments are enforceable from 2018 and Owners Corporations can be fined for not complying with them. Here are some things you need to know about this regulation:
1. Why is it necessary?
Most windows can be easy to open and even regular locks can be bypassed. The only way to ensure a child doesn’t open the window and fall is to install secure and efficient window safety devices. These devices need to be child-proof and robust so children can’t find a way to bypass them.
2. Which windows need these locks?
This regulation applies to windows that are more than 2 feet above the ground and less than 1.7 metres above the interior floor. Windows closer to the floor are easier to reach so children will be more likely to open them. They need to have functional locks that ensure the window can’t be opened more than 12.5 centimetres. Locks that allow windows to open and close fully with a special mechanism but only open 12.5 centimetres in normal circumstances are also permitted.
3. Who should install the locks?
The Owners Corporations are required to install the locks by law, but tenants can install them with special permission from the landlord. Property owners can’t refuse permission unless they have a real and valid reason for it. The contract should include a Residential Tenancy Condition Report with a list of all windows safety devices.
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