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Chicago children killed by falling television sets

Two Chicago area children were accidentally killed in the last three weeks when a television set fell upon them. Children are often injured or killed in ways never anticipated involving furniture or other objects falling upon them. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) states that nearly 70 percent of accidents involving a tip-over that caused injuries to children involve television sets. The total injuries from such accidents are approximately 13,700 per year.

Another feature that makes televisions more prone to falling is the fact that many are placed upon furniture or stands that are unsafe. When designing televisions, warnings against proper furnishings for the television to stand upon must also be taken into account.

Right now, industry standards recommending the use of safety straps to prevent television sets from falling such a way are not mandatory. There is a push to make television sets less prone to tipping, and many advocates want to make sure that parents leave the store after a television is purchased with a safety strap available to be used.

There is nothing as horrific as losing a child because of an accident, yet it is something that occurs far too often. Manufacturers of products often skirt their duty to design safer products by not taking the actions of children into account. Sadly, such safety considerations often never come to light until after a child has already been injured or killed. However, lawsuits filed after such an accident has occurred sometimes motivate industries to make the necessary changes and insure that such an accident does not occur again.

Source: Chicago Tribune, "TV tip-overs: Advocates call for the use of straps to prevent child deaths and injuries," by Duaa Eldeib, Nov. 15, 2011

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