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1st December 2014

HSE warning as care home fined for resident's fatal fall: Check window restrictors to avoid falls

Care homes have been warned to check their window restrictor fittings after a care home was fined for failing to ensure an elderly resident’s safety. The 92-year-old died after she managed to overcome a restrictor device to open a window and fell from her first floor room.

Following the hearing at Cardiff Crown Court, HSE Inspector Janet Viney warned: “Falls from windows are a very well-known risk in the health and care sectors. For example between 2005 and 2010 there were 21 fatal accidents from this cause across the UK.

“It is therefore essential that care homes take measures to ensure vulnerable residents are kept safe. They should carry out a risk assessment and where it identifies that individuals are at risk from falls from windows then adequate restrictors should be fitted."

The care home's owner pleaded guilty to one charge under the Health and Safety at work act and was fined by the Health and Safety Executive on November 19, over the incident which took place in 2010. The care home had fitted window restrictors but the HSE found they were unsuitable because they could be easily over-ridden.

Read more on this story

HSE: Welsh care home fined following elderly resident's death

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