According to the National Fire Protection Association, an escape ladder is the safest way to exit a second-story window. The association strongly recommends that people practice using an escape ladder with adult supervision since ladders can be dangerous if they are used incorrectly. Although other alternatives exist, such as climbing down a nearby tree, it is important to consider the safety risks of sneaking out of a second-story window.
One story is typically slightly more than 10 feet. That means that a second-story window is approximately 20 feet high. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 140 children die each year and 3 million seek medical care for injuries caused by falls from the second story of a building, as of 2014. Additionally, falls are second only to automobile accidents in causes of death each year due to accidental injury. Before sneaking out of a window, it is important to weigh the possible consequences of a miscalculated escape, such as an error in using an escape ladder as the result of poor training, with respect to the reason for sneaking out of the window. When at all possible, it is safest to exit through the ground floor of a house.