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Furniture Tip-Overs

Most parents do not think of furniture and TVs as dangerous. However, when these items tip-over, serious injury can and does occur.

Furniture Tip-Overs

Most parents do not think of furniture and TVs as dangerous. However, when these items tip-over, serious injury can and does occur.

FURNITURE TIP-OVER FACTS

  • More than 40 children younger than 18 years of age visit the emergency department each day for injuries from furniture tip-overs.
  • Among all tip-over injuries, TV tip-overs cause the most injuries for children younger than 10 years.
  • Desks, cabinets and bookshelves tipping over lead to the greatest number of tip-over injuries to children ages 10-17 years. 

WHAT CAUSES TIP-OVERS?

  • Most injuries occur when unsecured furniture falls or tips-over.
  • Many times a child pulls the furniture onto himself.
  • Other causes include children climbing the furniture or pushing it over on another child.
  • Young children are not able to think about the danger of their actions. They are often not fast enough to avoid a falling piece of furniture, or strong enough to lift the furniture off of themselves if they are trapped.

PREVENTION TIPS

  • Place the TV on a low, wide base, and push it as far back on its base as possible. Check that the size and weight limit of the stand will hold your TV.
  • Do not use shelves or dressers as TV stands. These are not made to support the weight of a TV. 
  • Strap all TVs to a stable stand and/or wall.
  • Keep cords from TVs and other appliances tucked away so a child does not pull these items down on himself.
  • Do not place items of interest (toys, remote control) high on shelves or on top of the TV. Children may try to climb up the furniture to reach these items.
  • 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 do not require drilling holes in furniture and can secure items up to 100 lbs.
  • Place heavy items on lower shelves of bookcases or entertainment centers. 
  • Use desks with wide legs or solid bases.
  • Install drawer stops on all drawers.

 

Content provided by the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s