Furniture tip-overs can kill, physicians warn


Washington –The American College of Emergency Physicians is reminding parents and caretakers of the dangers of furniture tip-overs.

Every year from 2009 to 2011, about 43,000 people were treated in emergency departments as a result of objects – such as TVs, dressers and file cabinets – tipping over, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Sixty percent of those visits involved children. During that time period, 294 children died.

ACEP offers the following tips:

  • Secure furniture – especially pieces that have shelves, drawers and doors – to walls. Remove top-heavy furniture that cannot be secured.
  • Secure computer monitors.
  • Store TVs, computer equipment and other heavy commonly used objects close to the ground.
  • Do not put objects on top of TVs.
  • Secure or remove artwork that could fall.
  • Secure appliances, such as refrigerators, ovens and microwaves.
  • Install safety gates to keep young children out of rooms that have greater risks.

“Telling a child not to touch or climb on something is not enough,” ACEP President Alex Rosenau said in a press release. “You must take the first steps to prevent tragedy from happening in your home – by childproofing each room they are in.”