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Worrying Heights

Worrying Heights

A wave of children falling to their death from high rises has gripped the UAE over the last few months, and Kipp is appalled by the fact that a lot of these children were left unattended.

April 25, 2012 3:16 by



“Three-year old boy falls to his death from 14th floor apartment in Sharjah”. “Six-year old boy saved from 10th floor fall”. “Baby survives fall from 7th floor”. “Three-year old falls to death from living room window in Abu Dhabi”. “A five-year-old boy and his mother die after separately falling off the balcony of their flat in Dubai”.

The tragic headlines are countless – fortunately, the latest one has a happy ending, as a civil defence team rescued a 6-year old boy from plummeting to his death from his apartment window in Ajman. Shockingly, the boy was home alone, as were many of the children who suffered heartbreaking fates. One little girl who died in Abu Dhabi late last year after falling from her fifth floor apartment as her aunt slept in the house had been saved only four weeks before, when a policeman who’d seen her hanging from her kitchen window came to her rescue. She had been left alone in the apartment.

As the spate of headlines horrifies the UAE, Kipp can’t help but wonder: how many more tragic deaths before parents take responsibility? And more importantly, when will parents be held accountable for negligence? As authorities work to come up with regulations to address safety standards in high rises, parents are repeatedly being asked to exercise caution, and common sense. In many countries across the world, leaving children below a certain age home alone is a criminal act, punishable by law. Yet, too many of the cases in the UAE involve children being left unsupervised, with direct access to balconies and windows.

There are few things more tragic than losing a child, but enough is enough. Accidents happen all the time, and life can get in the way of parents’ attention, but Kipp can’t help but feel that parents should be held 100 percent accountable for leaving their children unattended, under any circumstances.



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