Parents asked to remember risk of furniture tipping over on children
Officials are sounding a warning to parents after a toddler was killed when a dressed tipped over.
Furniture tip-overs killed almost 500 young children between 2000-2022 according to a report.
"Just kids being kids," said Will Zick, a Wausau Firefighter. "They're curious and they're learning."
That curiosity, can turn deadly as was the case in Illinois just last week when a 3-year-old boy was killed after a dresser tipped over on him.
"Trying new environments, new things, and (kids) tend to get into trouble," said Zick.
From 2018-2022, over 22,000 Americans were hospitalized due to tip-over injuries, and 44% of them being children eighteen and under. One of the biggest contributing factors are televisions which cause 71% of child tip-over fatalities in that same timespan.
"Making sure any heavy furniture is unable to be tipped over, pulled over, if it's climbed on," said Zick. "A lot of this furniture I believe comes with straps to secure it to prevent this kind of thing."
If you have kids, or even pets, it's suggested you use them.
"If the straps aren't used, it could pose a risk of it tipping over, injuring, or killing a kid," said Zick.
You can also find anti-tip-over kits at a hardware store which cost usually less than $20 and easy enough to install within 20 minutes.
Authorities do say that parents should still talk to their children, so they understand safety hazards.
"Sitting down and being upfront. Making sure they know the dangers of heavier furniture or climbing on top of stuff," said Zick.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is pushing for a mandatory safety standard. That includes the stability furniture has on a carpet, the ability to hold a 60-pound child, and more. Those standards the CPSC say could be ready by fall.