OK, this is a simple thing that’s so easy not to do. But we all should.
So, if you have any free-standing chest of drawers, dresser or shelves, you need to check – are they secured to the wall? And if not, you need to fix them to the wall asap.
The reason? Drawers pull out and can be climbed up, like a ladder. And that heavy furniture can topple over. It’s even more dangerous if there’s something heavy on them, such as a TV.
But they won’t topple if they’re fixed to the wall. It’s as simple as that.
One American family have decided to share a shocking video showing their 2-year-old twin sons having a terrifying accident when they climbed up a dresser in their room.
The dresser, which appeared to have empty drawers, fell right on top of them and trapped one toddler underneath.
Incredibly, in this case, the boy was able to wriggle part of the way out and his twin was able to push the furniture off him and they both came out of it relatively unscathed. But it could have been so much worse. You can watch the full video below – but be warned, it’s really shocking.
It’s more common than you might think
There have been a number of very sad stories over the past few years about children being crushed by falling furniture. In America, a child dies almost every 2 weeks from furniture, a TV or appliance toppling on them.
That’s a terrifying statistic and it led to the American Consumer Product Safety Commission creating its own hard-hitting video showing the dangers. It also shows us the simple way to secure this kind of furniture and even televisions to the wall, so that they will not fall if a child climbs on top of them.
The reconstruction shows that in a matter of seconds a sturdy chest of drawers can tip over and kill a child.
Warnings about IKEA’s Malm range
Three young children have recently been killed in the US after chests of drawers from IKEA’s popular Malm range fell on them. IKEA has warned its customers once again about the importance of wall fixing – and in the UK, all its dressers come with a fixing kit.
But this isn’t just a story about IKEA. Any chest, dresser or shelf unit could pose a risk.
In 2004 a mother in Berkshire discovered her two-year-old twins had been crushed to death beneath a chest of drawers that had fallen on top of them while they were playing after she put them down for a nap.
Betsy and William Woodbridge died instantly after the drawers overturned on them both. The twins had woken early and had emptied the drawers of clothes and Betsy had tried to climb up, toppling the chest on both of them.
At the inquest into the twins’ death, the coroner Peter Bedford recorded verdicts of accidental death, saying “If parents can review the safety of their nurseries and if any lessons can be learnt, then something positive can come out of this awful tragedy.”
At the risk of sounding preachy, making sure furniture is fixed to the wall could save your child’s life.