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Windows/fall risk

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by Bran, 2nd Apr, 2016.

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  1. Bran

    Bran Well-Known Member

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    Are there any recommendations/rulings on window heights from the ground, falls risks etc that mandate certain protection e.g. screens, fixed window openings?

    My new place has casement windows that open out from about waist height right through, then a second set about shoulder height.

    The property manager has pulled me up and said they need at least screens in case someone (a child) inadvertently climbs up on some furniture and topples out.

    I have a quote for security grilles which isn't ridiculous, but I thought I might just limit there opening instead.

    My brother has the same PM who made the same call, he limited all the openings with a little chain.

    I don't want a tragedy, but I don't want to waste cash either.

    It's fairly high off the ground... probably up to 4m
     
  2. Marg4000

    Marg4000 Well-Known Member

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    You mean limit how far the windows open?

    May be unappealing for summer in Queensland when you want all the breezes you can get.

    Also may be a hazard in case of fire. For the same reason make sure any security grilles allow for emergency exit if they cover the whole window.
    Marg
     
  3. Bran

    Bran Well-Known Member

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    Yep. Just for the lower ones in the parts of the house that are highest.

    It's definitely unappealing. As are screens.
     
  4. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    I'd be inclined to add some timber slats to the inside. Whatever is cheap but looks ok. This isn't going to be there forever, is it (the house, I mean)?

    How high from the floor level is the opening? Kids can climb on things no matter how high the window opening is, and if it is legal height to the sill, then I'd leave it.
     
  5. Bran

    Bran Well-Known Member

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    Anyone know what is legal height? I don't think it's any lower than my QLDers. None of which have screens!
     
  6. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    Google found this...

    Bedroom Window Regulations 2013 Australia

    and this

    http://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/DeckBalconyAndWindowSafetyGuideline.pdf

    and this

    https://www.awa.org.au/documents/item/75

    See page 3 on this last link -
    Similarly, for all other windows where the fall height is 4m or greater:

    • If the opening is more than 865 mm above the floor and there are no climbable elements, no screens or restrictors are required.

    • If the opening is less than 865 mm above the floor or there are climbable elements, then permanent screens or restrictors are required.

      Again, there is an advantage in having the glazing extend to the floor.

      There are a number of hardware solutions available, such as short chain winders and barrier screens which will allow windows to comply with the new requirements. We have been advised sliding window vent locks which key lock the sash at 125 mm, but allow the sash to open fully when unlocked will meet the requirements of the BCA. However, care must be taken to ensure that the water performance of the sill is not compromised by the hardware fixings. Unfortunately, it is envisaged that there will be a few problems from DIY after-market installations.

      An AWA technical sub-committee has developed a method of testing screens and hardware to meet the BCA requirements. An Industry Code of Practice ICP 005 has been published which can be used by members to demonstrate compliance with the BCA. Visit www.awa.org.au to download.
    VENTILATION?

    Australian Window Association

    a: Pymble Corporate Centre, Suite 1, Level 1, Building 1, 20 Bridge Street, Pymble NSW 2073 t: +61 2 9498 2768 f: +61 2 9498 3816 e: info@awa.org.au w: www.awa.org.au

    One question that has arisen is how do these requirements affect the BCA ventilation requirement that the opening area of a window be 5% of the floor area of the room. The ABCB have advised that the ventilation area of a window is calculated by the total area of the sash, not by the openable area.
     
  7. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    What about the security type mesh(tougher stuff) fly screens, then screw then in place so they can't be removed
     
  8. MyPropertyPro

    MyPropertyPro SE Qld Property Management & Investor Services Business Member

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    Nobody wants a tragedy and I have actually dealt with some disputes relating to this very issue. A child was jumping on the bed and fell on to the flyscreen and fell (not far in this case so no injuries thank goodness), scary all the same for all involved, however I do believe a lot needs to fall back on the tenants here - if they view the property that has high windows and they have small children and think this could be a safety issue - then don't apply for the property.
     
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  9. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    @Bran - Flyscreens do not stop people falling out of windows.

    Physical restrictions on opening the window more than 100 mm are required - consider using casement winders.

    Linky ===> Whitco
     
  10. Richard Williams

    Richard Williams Buyers Agent - Southeast QLD Business Member

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    My B&P guy said I needed to install a rail or bar to make the minimum height 1000mm from the floor, that was Nov 2015. Also I asked the tenants to not position any beds against a window, and I checked myself to ensure that was the case.

    So, if no climbable elements is 1000mm ok?