From the moment a baby starts crawling, parents know that they must “baby-proof” their homes. However, most parents do not think of shelves, dressers or TV screens as possible dangers to small children. Over the last 2 decades the number of injuries due to furniture and TV tip-overs has increased. Furniture Tip-Over Statistics Every 3 weeks a child dies because of a TV Tip-Over 14,700 children visit the emergency room for injuries from furniture tip-overs every year. As TV screens gets BIGGER, tip-overs cause the greatest number of injuries for children younger than 10, with a 31% increase in TV tip-over related injuries over the past decade. Unstable desks, cabinets and bookshelves lead to the greatest number of tip-over injuries. A 36-inch TV falling 3 feet creates the same impact as a 1-year-old child falling 10 stories. From bruises and scrapes to serious internal injuries, furniture tip-overs can be deadly. AT RISK! Most injuries occur in children aged 7 years or younger. Small children may not understand the danger involved. They are not fast enough to avoid falling furniture or strong enough to lift the furniture off of themselves if they are trapped. Furniture Tip-Overs Can Be Prevented Lack of awareness is one of the leading reasons behind furniture tip-overs. Over 169 deaths have occurred due to furniture tip-overs. Each one of them could have been prevented. Take the following safety measures:
Place TVs on a low, wide base. Push it as far back on its base as possible.
Do not use shelves or dressers as TV stands. These are not made to support the weight of a TV. When purchasing a TV stand, check the size and weight limits.
Attach all TVs to a stable stand and/or wall.
Attach large furniture such as dressers and bookshelves to the wall using safety straps, L-brackets or other secure attachment devices.
Safety straps are available that can secure items up to 100 pounds.
Use desks with wide legs or solid bases.
Install drawer stops on all drawers to prevent them from being pulled out more than two-thirds of the way
Parents should not place toys and other eye-catching items high on shelves or on top of TVs as children may try to climb up the furniture to reach these items.
Keep cords from TVs and other appliances hidden or stapled to the wall so that a child cannot pull items down.