Twelve children below five years died from high-rise falls in the UAE in 2011, reported 'Emarat Al Youm'. Residents, both nationals and expatriates, say landlords are partly responsible and urge them to fix safety measures and bars on windows and balconies. They also urged authorities to penalise owners who violate safety sandards.
Meanwhile, another recent study held parents responsible for childrens' fatal falls. As in most cases children were left alone at home.
With an increase in the number of high rise deaths in the UAE, the Ministry of Interior is all set to launch an awareness campaign.
Lt. Colonel Faisal Mohammed Al Shammari, Director of the Center of Protection of Children under the Ministry of Interior, said that center will lunch this month an awareness campaign aimed at families living in high rises.
The campaign will highlight the importance of adopting preventive measures and on how to protect children from fatal falls. About 80,000 pamphlets with guidelines in Arabic, English and Urdu will be distributed among residents. The campaign will also be supported by the Department of Transport and civil defence.
Last month an Egyptian girl plunged to her death from the fifth floor window of her apartment in Abu Dhabi.
The most tragic incident was of the death of a mother and son in Dubai's Jumeirah Lake Towers last year. Seeing her five-year-old child slip down from the window, the Iranian mother jumped down too.
Similarly, a four-year-old child fell from the 14th floor in Sharjah and died on the spot.
Children are also influenced by programmes on TV and movies.
Mohammed Mubarak, an Emirati, said: "The issue is not only linked to controlling children but also about taking precautionary measures to guarantee safety inside homes."
Saud Ali, Emirati, said strict standards window security must be implemented. He called on the media to promote safety awareness.
Meanwhile, Rami Hamad said the responsibility rests primarily on the family. Small children should be left alone at home, he said and added building regulations need to be looked into.
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