Ventilation and window safety in in education buildings including student accommodation is an increasing concern and so we are offering free virtual surveys over the summer.
It’s widely acknowledged that effective ventilation reduces transmission of viruses, yet this needs to be balanced with HSE regulations regarding window safety and preventing falls from windows. The summer holidays are an ideal time to be getting windows ready to meet these challenges before students return again in September.
HSE Regulations for Schools
Window restrictors across student accommodation, in universities, teaching buildings and common areas can enable institutions to comply with their duty of care with regards to window safety.
HSE regulations for window safety in education buildings stipulate that where there is a danger of falling through a window from height, the window must be fitted with a restrictor to prevent it opening more than 100mm.
Open windows should not project into an area where people are likely to collide with them (e.g. walkways/play areas). Either window opening restrictors must be fitted or a means provided to prevent people walking/running close to the opening windows (e.g. barriers/shrubs).
In special schools, and maintained schools which have students who might try to jump out of windows above ground level, the following additional requirements also apply to windows on floors above surface level:
- The restrictor and fixings must only be capable of being overridden by the use of a tamper-proof tool (e.g. the standard window restrictors which can be pressed to over-ride are not adequate, nor are screw fixings which could be undone using an object to turn them);
- The window frame/restrictor must be suitably robust enough to withstand foreseeable forces a determined individual might apply in trying to open the window further and against potential damage (either accidental or deliberate).
When choosing window restrictors leaders responsible for education and student accommodation buildings must ensure that the restrictors comply with HSE guidance and that maintenance schedules are carried out.
Window Restrictors for Education
In recent years the above regulations often meant installing windows that don’t open – but we now know that this can be an issue for public health and not just for Covid 19, but for flu and colds too.
Window restrictors, also know as ‘window cable locks’, are an ideal solution. These allow windows to be opened to 100mm for ventilation and window restrictors provide safety and security as they are strong enough to prevent falls and unauthorised entry through partially opened windows. They can be used on wood and UPVC windows as well as sash and inward opening windows.
If you already have window restrictors in student accommodation or other education buildings in place the summer is the ideal time to undertake maintenance reviews of the restrictors you already have in place.
Book A Virtual Survey
Jackloc offer free virtual site surveys for education institutions over the summer holidays. Our virtual site surveys allow us to look at the windows through a video call and we will provide recommendations, advice and quotes.
The site survey is free, with no obligation to purchase and just requires a video connection via a portable electronic device so that we can see the windows in detail. Once the survey has taken place, you will receive a verbal and written report of our advice.
If you need professional installation support for fitting window restrictors, we can also provide details of commercial and domestic installers who can help.