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Consumer Reports: New furniture tip-over dangers

Posted at 4:23 AM, Dec 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-05 10:28:53-05

TUCSON, Ariz. - Every 17 minutes, an unsecured piece of furniture, appliance, or television tips over and injures or kills someone in the United States. Most of the victims are children under six-years-old. During Consumer Reports' ongoing investigation into the stability of dressers, newly released government data show Dressers 30 inches tall and under have been linked to deaths.

"We found that just because a dress low and seems stable, like one that's three drawers high, it can still pose a deadly tip-over risk to small children in your home," says Rachel Rabkin Peachman, Consumer Reports.

Records released in June showed that at least five fatal tip-overs were linked to dressers that measured 30 inches or lower. As part of its continued analysis, CR conducted three tip-over tests on 17 dresser models marketed as measuring 30 inches tall and under to see if they are prone to tipping over. Only five of the dressers passed all of CR's tests, including the 150-dollar IKEA NORDLI -- showing that a stable, affordable dresser at this height is possible.

"Companies have the ability to do something about this epidemic," says Peachman. "We've found that it is possible to build more stable dressers of any height. And our findings highlight the need for strong safety standards for all dressers, not just taller ones."

Consumer Reports is pushing for mandatory safety standards for dressers of all sizes, and says all furniture should be properly anchored to a wall.

A link to Consumer Reports' furniture tip-over test results can be found here.