TV & FURNITURE TIP OVERS

Since 2001, at least 22 children under the age of 9 have died in Australia from toppling furniture or televisions, with children under 3 years of age at greatest risk.
Animals

Children are naturally inquisitive and love to explore their environment – one of the ways they do this is by climbing and pulling on objects, including household furniture. This may lead to the furniture not being used as it is intended. For example, they may use bookcases or shelves as ladders to gain access to an item that is stored up high, which may cause the furniture to topple over if it isn’t secured.

An estimated 2,600 Australians receive hospital treatment for injuries caused by toppling furniture and televisions each year. Since 2001, at least 22 children under the age of 9 have died in Australia from toppling furniture or televisions, with children under 3 years of age at greatest risk.

Blake’s Story

In August 2016, toddler Blake Shaw was killed when a freestanding bookcase fell on him. As part of a joint campaign between Kidsafe and the ACCC, Blake’s parents, Tim and Kirstie, bravely share their story, providing a tragic reminder to all parents and careers to anchor unstable furniture and TVs.

Safety Tips

The good news is there are some quick and easy steps you can take today to help make furniture in your home safe.

Buy Safe

  • • Purchase low-set furniture or furniture with sturdy, stable and broad bases.
  • • Look for furniture that comes with safety information or equipment for anchoring it to the walls.
  • • Test the furniture in the shop – make sure it is stable. For example, pull out top drawers of a chest of drawers and apply a little pressure to see how stable it is. Make sure the drawers do not fall out easily.

Use Safe

  • • Attach, mount, bolt or otherwise secure furniture to walls and floors.
  • • Do not put heavy items on top shelves of bookcases.
  • • Secure televisions to the wall or TV stand.
  • • Do not put tempting items such as favourite toys on top of furniture that encourage children to climb up and reach.
  • • Put locking devices on all drawers to prevent children opening them and using them as steps.