Burgler Bars

Installment Requirements

Burglar bars, also known as security bars, can only be installed so that they may be removed from the inside without tools or keys, special knowledge or extra effort. In other words, it must be easy enough for a child to open it without any help. This specific rule applies to sleeping rooms.

Bad Results From Improper Installment

  • August 2000, Jacksonville, FL - A Jacksonville mother and her 9-year-old son died and four other people were hospitalized after being trapped behind window and door security bars in a burning house.
  • December 1999, Detroit, MI - Six die in Detroit house fire. Three children, their mother, grandmother and great grandmother were overcome by smoke and died. Security bars on the doors and windows obstructed the firemen from entering the home.
  • April 1997, East Palo Alto, CA - Nine people die trapped in their burning home by window bars.
  • February 1997, Ybor City, FL - Four children, ages 6 - 12, were killed in an early morning house fire. Burglar bars hampered firefighters' attempts to rescue them.
  • October 1995, Oakland, CA - Five children die after their mother escapes fire but cannot get back inside, blocked by locked door and steel bars on windows.
  • January 1995, Los Angeles, CA - A woman saves her two sisters by forcing open an emergency foot lever that released the security bars on a back bedroom window. A woman, her son age two, daughter age three, and son 11 months, died, the bars in their bedroom did not have a release mechanism.