An astonishing number of children died from a TV set falling over onto a child in the last decade, according to a September report released by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. 169 children suffered fatal injuries when a TV tipped over between 2000 and 2010, which accounted for 79% of all fatal tip-overs during that time period.
In light of these heartbreaking statistics, safety advocates are strongly urging that either manufacturers provide safety straps with all TV sets, or that retailers sell the sets in a highly visible location.
One safety expert, Arvey Levinsohn, who owns a safety business specifically tailored to children's safety, recommends the use of nylon straps to secure TVs directly to the wall.
As I noted on my Facebook wall not too long ago, I can distinctly remember about 14 years back when my young son Max had climbed up a dresser only to have it fall down on him. Fortunately he was not hurt from that moment of youthful playfulness. Memories like that, however, help me realize how great of an idea these safety straps really are.
The danger exists with both older tube models as well as flat screen models. The old TV was heavy, bulky, and had a center of gravity in the front of the television, making it easy for it to tip over. New flat-screen TV models, however, are lighter and thinner, which makes it easier for children to grab onto and potentially have it tip-over onto them.
When you take into account that many TV sets in children's rooms are often placed on unsturdy furniture, the risk is even greater for an older TV set that gets moved into a child's room to become a lethal weapon. They may not always be fashionable, but in the end, I hope we'd pick safe and healthy children over aesthetics.
recently named in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyer's In America, David Mittleman has been representing seriously injured people since 1985. A partner with Church Wyble PC—a division of Grewal Law PLLC—Mr. Mittleman and his partners focus on medical malpractice, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, nursing home injury, pharmacy/pharmacist negligence and disability claims.