Every two weeks in the United States, a child dies when a television or some other large piece of furniture tips over onto him or her. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently released a study that offers safety guidelines for tip-over prevention.
- As the study notes, 83.5 percent of TV tip-overs occur when a child climbs furniture that has a TV placed on it, such as a dresser or a bookshelf. To prevent this from happening, the CPSC urges parents either to use furniture specifically designed to hold TVs or to mount the TVs to the walls. Parents should further consider removing any objects that might draw a child’s attention and encourage him or her to climb a TV stand.
- The CPSC also encourages consumers to anchor dressers and TVs to the wall with anti-tip devices. In fact, in all but one of the nearly 300 tip-overs included in the CPSC’s study, anti-tip devices had not been installed. Most new dressers and TVs come with such devices. If your furniture does not, you may purchase individual anti-tip kits separately.
- Finally, larger TVs are both more likely to tip over and more likely to cause serious injuries when they do. These cathode ray tube TVs are heavier towards the front, making them less stable, and they can bring upwards of 12,000 pounds of force down onto a child if they do fall. Consumers are urged to recycle their cathode ray tube TVs and replace them with lighter, more stable flat-screen models.