Make your home safer: Secure your furniture and tvs to avoid tip-over injuries

B.R. Shenoy

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Boy standing in front of flat screen tvVidal Balielo Jr./Pexels

"People either don't know about the risks, or they think it can't happen when an adult is nearby," Alex Hoehn-Saric, chair of the CPSC.

According to recent research, there is a lethal menace lurking in your house.

Furniture Tip-over Facts

According to a new CPSC analysis on furniture, television, and appliance tip-over injuries and fatalities, an estimated yearly average (2018-2020) of 22,500 Americans required hospital emergency-department treatment for tip-over injuries, with roughly 44 % being children under the age of 18.

Per a recent study by the CSPC, there have been 581 tip-over fatalities in the United States since 2000, of which 472 were children (81%, ages 17 years and younger).

What Causes Tip-overs?

The majority of the deaths were caused by the weight of an appliance, furniture, or television on youngsters aged five or younger.

According to studies, furniture of all shapes and sizes is prone to tipping. It doesn't matter if the piece of furniture is small and heavy or tall and light–if it can be climbed on, it has the potential to topple over.

However, heavier furniture poses a considerably greater risk, especially if it is not adequately secured. Keep an eye out for dressers, bookcases, and other furniture that may not be tall but might still fall over.

According to a study issued by the Consumer Product Safety Commission last week, television was implicated in 71% of the 472 child fatalities.

When children play at home, they frequently utilize dressers and shelves as climbing toys, which leads to tip-overs. Furthermore, as huge TVs become more popular, the chance of serious harm from a TV falling increases.

Who is at Risk?

The majority of injuries occur in youngsters under the age of seven. Young children are frequently too slow to evade a falling piece of furniture or too weak to raise the furniture off of themselves if they become caught.

AnchorIt! Campaign

The CPSC began the AnchorIt! Campaign in 2015 to educate Americans about the hazards of tip-overs. There was a 55 percent decline in tip-over injuries treated in U.S. emergency departments between 2011 and 2020, mainly owing to fewer TV tip-overs.

According to the CPSC's Anchor It! website, anchoring kits are offered online and in stores for as little as $20, and individuals may install them themselves.

Prevention Tips

Keep the following CPSC reminders in mind:

  • Fix furniture to the wall, such as shelves, desks, and dressers.
  • Buy furniture with broad legs or robust bases.
  • Place heavy items on shelves that are close to the floor.
  • Use solid furniture such as television stands or media centers to secure TVs.
  • Wall mount flat screen TVs whenever possible.
  • Consider recycling it if you have an older TV – one of those heavy, bulky ones without a flat back.
  • Cords should be tucked away, so they don't get yanked on or pose a tripping hazard.
  • Avoid putting attractive items on a furniture, such as toys or the remote. If your child sees it, she will try to take it.

Adult monitoring is still advised even when TVs and furnishings are anchored.

Learn more about CSPC online here.

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