3 Ways to Make Your Living Room Safer
You've plugged up all the outlets and locked all the cabinets. But don't put away your screwdriver just yet. A recent study has found that injuries caused by furniture tip-overs are on the rise, with an average of 15,000 kids visiting the ER each year after a desk, cabinet, or television has toppled over on them. How to protect your tot:
Tackle the boob tube first
TVs account for the majority of tip-over injuries in kids under 10, says Gary Smith, M.D., director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital, in Columbus, OH. He recommends placing your TV on a low, wide base and pushing it as far back as possible. Then strap it to the stand or mount it on the wall with brackets (available at hardware stores). Tuck cords away.
Find a new spot for the remote
Remote controls are very appealing to kids, so avoid putting them on top of the TV, tempting kids to climb up. Same goes for placing toys and other items of interest on top shelves.
Any piece of furniture that measures 30 inches or higher should be secured to the wall with metal L-brackets or safety straps such as Safety 1st's Furniture Wall Straps. And install stops or locks so dresser drawers can't be opened more than two-thirds of the way, which can cause the unit to tip.