Last night, Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty broker Cyrus O’Bryant and his family appeared on KOMO 4 News with Connie Thompson to discuss an issue near to their hearts: window blind cord safety. Discussing the fatality of Gavin, their five-year-old son, and encouraging awareness for this often overlooked danger, the O’Bryant’s showed bravery and strength in sharing their story.
The segment began by describing a Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) report that Connie Thompson shared on air back in 1985, which outlined the hazards of window blind cords. And while there have been some regulations put in place and a number of retailers have ceased selling blinds with cords, one child per month still loses their life in a window blind cord accident. In the current state of the market, affordability is often an issue, as cordless options are often much more expensive, yet there is also problem with the lack of clarity in safer options.
Thompson explained, “in my visits to local retailers I found cordless can be confusing. For example, one blind style is labeled cordless, because you don’t need a cord to raise or lower it. However, there’s still an accessible interior cord that can be pulled out.” These interior cords pose just as much of a danger as the exterior ones, meaning that the potential for accidents still exists.
As Cyrus and his family shared the struggle they’ve endured over the past four years, Cyrus said, “I never wanted to have his death mean nothing.” And it certainly hasn’t, given that the O’Bryant’s have been working diligently since 2011 to hold companies accountable for safety and educating families so they may create safer home environments for their children. In addition to creating awareness via the television news segment, the O’Bryant’s are also currently working with “the non-profit advocacy group Parents for Window Blind Safety and other consumer groups” in an effort to “prohibit the sale of window coverings with accessible cords of any kind.”
Of the interview, Cyrus remarked on the amazing job Connie Thompson did with the story, his pride for his family and his hope for a future with new window blind cord regulations and safer homes for families.