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Ikea recalls dangerous window blinds and shades

WASHINGTON - Ikea is recalling 3.4 million window blinds and shades after a child nearly strangled on a cord.

The recall covers Roman shades and roll-up blinds sold at Ikea stores nationwide from January 1998 to June 2009, and roller blinds from that time period that don't have a tension device attached to the bead chain.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced the recall Thursday after receiving a new report of a 1 1/2-year-old boy in Lowell, Mass., who nearly strangled earlier this year.

Ikea has recalled hundreds of thousands of other Roman shades and roller blinds in the past two years after a 1-year-old girl died and a 2-year-old boy had a close call.

The blinds are dangerous because a child's neck can become entangled in the cords.

"Parents should expect to see more recalls of dangerous window coverings," said agency spokesman Scott Wolfson.

Ikea is asking consumers to stop using the recalled blinds and shades and return them to their stores for a full refund. For more details consumers can call 888-966-4532 or visit tiny url.com/y9p8bh3 or cpsc.gov.

In the roller blinds, a child can strangle when the blind's bead chain is not attached to the wall or floor with a tension device. In roll-up blinds, a child's neck can become caught if the adjustment loop slides off the blind or a child places his or her neck between the pull loop and the blinds material. In the Roman shades, a child can strangle if caught between the inner cord and the backside of the shade, or if the shade has a pull chain not attached to the wall or floor.

The safety agency has estimated that about 500 children have strangled on the cords of blinds and shades since the early 1980s.

Ikea has one store on Long Island, in Hicksville.

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