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Old 12th June 2010, 20:27   #1
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Exclamation Close call with power windows

Yesterday my 5 year old daughter had a narrow escape in my Scorpio. The power window was climbing up and within inches of strangulating her, when I pulled her head away. I thank God today that she is still alive.

Here's how it happened :

I brought my kids back from my club, and was entering the driveway in the vehicle, after my maid had opened the gates. The maid ran inside the house because of the rains. Normally my kids get down with her, but they stayed in the car because of the rains.

In my hurried approach, I felt that the left side of my Scorpio would hit the gate while entering, so I asked my daughter to check (a big mistake on my part).

She put her head out partially and started to help me. Then came the unexpected. While supporting herself, her hand touched the power window button, and it started rolling up, with her head hanging out !

I screamed and pulled her back, just in the nick of time. She was frightened no end. It took me a while to calm her down, and then she told me that the window had actually grazed her chin. The whole experience was quite traumatic.

I could have just turned off the ignition switch to de activate the power windows, but would have lost a crucial millisecond to reach back for it, from my already "stretched to the left" position.

My child lock normally is on, but I guess the car cleaner while cleaning had moved it accidentally to the unlocked position. This was my first mistake, not doing such an elementary check. I have now instructed my wife too, who drives the Ikon, to confirm that the child lock is on, before driving each time.

Requesting all friends, ferrying children and pets, to confirm the position of the child lock before driving each time, in the interest of preventing such freak accidents !
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Old 12th June 2010, 20:50   #2
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Sounds very scary (to any parent)
Anyway the power window would stop if there is something blocking its travel, but no idea how much force it will exert before that.

Once, I was rolling up my friend's Scorpio's power window (passenger side) and all of a sudden it just occurred to me to just try stopping its travel up, and I did so with my hands. It just stopped, and didn't move from there until we fixed the blown fuse next day! The scary thing in this case was to park the car with a half closed window out in the street the whole night.

Last edited by clevermax : 12th June 2010 at 20:52.
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Old 12th June 2010, 21:04   #3
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A girl was killed in the UK when she push her her out and her feet touched the switches of a fiat Tipo. The auto raise window went up with too much force. Thats why GM cars have the roll back facility if it senses an obstruction.

Edit: Did a search and found 16 children died in Fiat Tipo's and many more else where

http://www.safetyforum.com/powerwindows/

Last edited by ajmat : 12th June 2010 at 21:07.
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Old 12th June 2010, 21:11   #4
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Sounds scary @mooza; Thank your stars; God was on your Daughter's side yesterday.
I remember reading somwhere that Scorp has some kind of feature on the drivers side power windows, where, if the rising glass senses an obstacle in between, it stops there immediately. When I first read this, I called it as a joke & didn't even consider this as a feature that adds value. Now, I think it should be extended to all cars & on all 4 power windows, it really makes sense to me now.

Last edited by aargee : 12th June 2010 at 21:18.
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Old 12th June 2010, 23:11   #5
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Doesn't the Scorp have anti-pinch power windows?
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Old 13th June 2010, 05:55   #6
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Gosh that was scary to read let alone being there. Good nothing happened man! Wake up call for me too! Thanks for sharing this incident.
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Old 13th June 2010, 09:33   #7
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Thanks for the support and feedback, guys. I really needed it

After the incident, I tried putting a soft toy inbetween, and raised the same power window. Believe me, it squeezed the toy to half its size and stalled. No blown fuse though !
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Old 13th June 2010, 11:34   #8
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God bless the little girl! I have two little girls (6 and 3). We are always cautious with the doors, power windows and seat belts. This instance tells me that we need to be extra cautious. Once I had managed to get my finger while the power window in my Dzire rolled up. It would have broken, the finger I mean. The pain lasted for a good ten days.
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Old 13th June 2010, 11:51   #9
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Arn't cars these days euqiped with Master switch kind of thing. My Esteem has a switch which disables all the passenger window power window buttons. Every time, I have kids in my car (even though none of them are mine), I make it a point to engage this switch. Though I must admit, my intention used to be to prevent kids from playing with the window button.

@mooza, Relieved to hear that your daughter escaped unhurt.

Regards,
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Old 13th June 2010, 12:55   #10
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Default Switch design the culprit ??

Good that your kid is safe. Please add that extra step to make sure the windows are locked and your kids won't fiddle with the switch.

There have been many instances in the US too (couple of years back) that I had read about the windows rolling up and kids being strangled.

Power Windows Are Perilous - The Early Show - CBS News

I guess the switch used is unsafe in Scorpio (and some old gen Maruti's as well). Hope car makers look at these safety aspects during design.

Innova has this "safe" switch. Can't comment about others. Sorry, don't have pics of the safe and unsafe switches.
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Old 14th June 2010, 07:28   #11
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My vehicle has the "horizontally mounted press down" type switches, which are riskier since they get easily pressed down by accident. Lever type switches are better, which need to be pulled up for the window to roll up. This is nicely illustrated in the link below :

Power-window safety: Car safety, child safety

I hope the lever type switches can be retrofitted on my vehicle. I have seen this in my friend's Honda City.
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Old 14th June 2010, 08:31   #12
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Some aftermarket auto window relays linked to central locking have a safety cutoff feature that stops a window from going up if an obstruction is detected - like a hand. You could look at this as an alternate solution.
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Old 15th June 2010, 17:36   #13
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That was scary mooza. I guess you will have to spend quality time with your daughter so that she lets behind this episode. My wife used to inadvertantly press the power window button while sitting on the back seat. Hence I pushed it to lock position and only I can operate it from my controls as it's a potential danger!
Thank god your daughter is safe!
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Old 15th June 2010, 17:46   #14
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Really scary and hope your daughter is feeling better and is over the incident. Need to keep an eye open for these kind of power switches.

The lever type switches are safer. Car makers provide anti-pinch windows for auto one-touch roll up mirrors.
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Old 15th June 2010, 17:55   #15
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I thought the Scorpio came with anti pinch windows. The Xylo has it.

I remember when I posted the same and there was a member who asked, how does it actually help?

Child lock on the doors will have no effect for power windows.
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