Trauma Team Offers Safety Tips to Prevent Injuries from Falling TVs

(San Diego, CA) – Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego wants to get the word out about the dangers of falling television sets in homes. The warning follows the recent death of a child in which a television fell on the victim.

The Rady Children’s trauma team is seeing an increasing number of kids injured by toppling televisions and furniture. Injuries range from broken arms and legs to severe head injuries. “Several children have been seen in the hospital’s trauma unit, after being injured by falling televisions and/or furniture,” said Sue Cox, Trauma Services Director, at Rady Children’s Hospital. “Circumstances vary but in most of the cases it involved the child attempting to climb to get to a television and either pulling the TV off of the furniture or more often pulling both the furniture and television onto themselves.”

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission approximately 8,000-10,000 children are treated in emergency departments each year because of these “tip over” injuries.

IMPORTANT FACTS
• Newer televisions are front heavy and easy to tip over. They are becoming substantially larger and have been popular in recent years.
• Televisions, especially larger ones, on inadequate or unstable supports pose a serious injury risk to children.
• Many of the injuries in the San Diego have included tall dressers and bookcases with televisions on top of them. In some of the cases the TVs were not secured at all.

WHAT CAN PARENTS DO
• Use an anchor and/or angle brace to secure furniture to the wall.
• Place your television on a LOW piece of furniture; as far back as it will go.
• Make sure the television stand is sturdy, is designed for and can handle the weight of the TV and does not easily tip over.
• Anchor your TV to the wall with an appliance strap.
• Clear your TV and stand of any items that children might try to climb and reach including toys, movies, books etc.
• Do not place a VCR and/or DVD player on top of the television where child might attempt to climb to access.

About Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego:
Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, the largest children’s hospital in California, is a 442-bed pediatric care facility providing the largest source of comprehensive pediatric medical services in San Diego, Southern Riverside and Imperial counties. Rady Children’s is the only hospital in the San Diego area dedicated exclusively to pediatric healthcare and is the region’s only designated pediatric trauma center. On October 10, 2010, Rady Children’s opened the Acute Care Pavilion, a LEED-Certified (green) building that is home to the incredible Peckham Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, the state-of-the-art Warren Family Surgical Center, and a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit that cares for our community’s most fragile newborns. In May 2011, U.S. News & World Report ranked Rady Children’s among the best children’s hospitals in the nation in all ten pediatric specialties the magazine surveyed. For more information, visit www.rchsd.org and find us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.