Safety experts and Atlanta personal injury lawyers have been warning of the risk of child fatalities in furniture tip over accidents for many years.Last year, two toddlers were killed in furniture tip over accidents involving an IKEA dresser unit model. Now, IKEA North America is telling millions of owners of these dressers that these chests must be firmly anchored to the walls in order to prevent accidents of the type that killed the two toddlers.
IKEA has confirmed at least 14 tip over incidents that resulted in four injuries. The company says that the chest must be firmly anchored to the walls, in order to prevent injuries like these.
According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, one fatality involved a two-year-old boy in Pennsylvania who died in February last year, when a MALM chest of drawers fell on him. The boy was pinned to a bed, and died from his injuries. The second fatality involved a two-year-old child from Washington, who was killed in June of last year when a similar chest fell on him. According to IKEA North America, it has three other reports of child fatalities since 1989 involving tip overs of other models of chests. The company is offering free wall-mounting repair kits for 27 million dressers.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that there is a child fatality every two weeks in a furniture tip over accident. In addition, every 24 minutes, a child somewhere in the United States suffers injuries in a tip over accident. It’s not just chests of drawers that can pose a fatality risk. Children can be injured when wall-mounted televisions, appliances, or other furniture fall on them or move unexpectedly.
In fact, the risk of entrapment death in a toy chest is another major risk that parents must look out for. A child can easily climb into a toy chest, and find himself trapped inside with the lid latched shut.