Falling furniture fears

Child-proofing must include furniture as well

Kids love to climb. That, coupled with their natural curiosity and desire to play, can turn a seemingly innocent piece of furniture or television into something very dangerous.

A viral video of two toddler boys climbing on a dresser that then falls over has brought additional focus to the issue. In the video, the boys can be seen climbing onto open drawers in the middle of the three-drawer dresser. The dresser then tips, pinning one boy underneath.

Thankfully this story has a happy ending. The other boy was able to lift the dresser up enough to allow his brother to wiggle out. But not all children are so lucky.

One child dies ever two weeks in America after a TV, heavy furniture or an appliance falls onto them, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Of those who died, 88 percent were under 5.

Of the deaths that occur, 45 percent happen in a bedroom. Most of the time the child is crushed.

“We unfortunately have seen several severe, preventable injuries from falling furniture and TVs here,” said Sharon Rengers, R.N., manager of Norton Children’s Prevention & Wellness. “Relatively inexpensive furniture anchors can prevent death or at least lessen the injuries.”

Child-proof your home:

  • Anchor dressers, wardrobes, book cases, wall units and TV stands to the wall or the floor using the proper size anchor and a stud-finder to make sure it will not pull out.
  • Use low, sturdy furniture for TVs, and anchor it all: The TV to the furniture or wall, and the furniture to the wall or floor. Push the TV as far back on the furniture as possible, so it will not flip if bumped or if a drawer is opened.
  • Keep remote controls, toys and other items that might attract children off TV stands or high furniture.
  • Keep TV and/or cable cords out of sight. If they are pulled or tripped over, the television or stand could fall.

“Walk through your home, look for potential tip-over hazards and use the appropriate bolts and/or straps to stabilize these areas,” Rengers said. “While you may be hesitant to drill a hole in your wall to attach an anchor, consider the alternative.”

For more information on how to prevent a tip-over accident, call Norton Children’s Prevention & Wellness at (502) 629-7358.


Source: https://www.cpsc.gov/Safety-Education/Safety-Education-Centers/Tipover-Information-Center