2014

Advisory - Health Canada reminds Canadians of the dangers related to furniture tip-overs

OTTAWA, Feb. 5, 2013 /CNW/ -

The issue:

Health Canada is reminding parents of the dangers of television, furniture and appliance tip-overs. Each year there are hundreds of incidents in Canada of furniture tipping over onto children under 10. Furniture or television tip-overs can cause serious head and internal injuries, suffocation, and even death. More than 70% of the reported television tip-over incidents in Canada happened to children between one and three years of age. Most incidents reported involved televisions, but Health Canada is also concerned about other pieces of furniture falling onto children, such as dressers and bookcases.

Health Canada recommends buying only clothing storage furniture that meets the latest ASTM F2057 International Standard Safety Specification for Chests, Door Chests, and Dressers Consumer should check the label, visit the manufacturer's Web site, or ask the retailer to find out if the furniture piece selected meets this standard. Canadians who may have older pieces of furniture can visit their local hardware stores for readily available restraints or anchors. The restraints attach to a wall, framing or other support to help prevent tip-over entrapment hazards to young children.  Some companies have offered retrofit kits for furniture, including wall anchor straps to prevent tipping. Consumers may wish to contact the manufacturer of furniture to see if such kits are available.

Products affected:

Consumer products such as televisions and their stands, appliances and furniture like dressers and bookcases. Most recently, this includes:

  • All Natart furniture manufactured between 2005-2009.
    Consumers can contact Natart Juvenile Inc. to receive a free retrofit kit by emailing the firm or calling at (819) 364-3189 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday
  • Million Dollar Baby Emily dressers distributed between 2006-2010. Consumers can contact Million Dollar Baby to receive a free retrofit kit by visiting the firm's website and click on Safety HQ or call toll-free at (888) 673-6652 between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday.

What consumers should do:

  • Always supervise children in the home and teach them not to climb on or hang from furniture.

  • Choose storage furniture, such as bookcases, cabinets, television stands, and dressers, with a wide and stable base that sits directly on the floor. Models with legs or wheels are more likely to tip-over.

  • Attach furniture to the wall or dry-wall stud if possible, using the appropriate angle braces, anchors or safety straps. If these items come with the product, follow the manufacturer's instructions for installation.

  • When buying a dresser, look for one that meets the requirements of the current ASTM International Standard (F2057). Know before you buy: check the label, visit the manufacturer's Web site, or ask the retailer to find out if the dresser you have selected meets this standard.

  • Place televisions far back on low stable furniture that is designed to hold the weight and size of the television. Attach the television to the stand, if possible.

  • Do not place items that may appeal to a child, such as toys, plants and remote controls, on top of a television or tall furniture.

  • Do not place heavy items on top of elevated surfaces.

  • Regularly check that furniture, televisions and appliances are stable and secure and that electrical cords are out of children's reach.

  • For furniture with drawers, only open one drawer at a time to reduce the chance that it will tip over; completely close all drawers when not in use so they cannot be used as steps by a child; place heavier items in lower drawers; and install locking devices on each drawer if you have young children.

  • Do not assemble and use the furniture if instructions are not provided or if you cannot follow the instructions.

  • Verify a product's label, visit the manufacturer's website or ask the retailer to find out what safety features are available for the furniture you are considering.

  • Always use furniture for its intended purpose.

For more information:

Consumers and health professionals wanting more information about this advisory from Health Canada can contact the Public Enquiries Line at 613-957-2991, or toll free at 1-866-225-0709.

Media enquiries related to this Advisory should be directed to Health Canada Media Relations at 613-957-2983.

How to report problems with consumer products:

Health Canada would like to remind Canadians to report any health or safety incidents related to the use of a consumer product or cosmetic. An easy-to-use incident report form is now available on the Department's website.

E-mail: CPSR-RSPC@hc-gc.ca
Mail: Incident Report - Consumer Product Safety Directorate
Health Canada
269 Laurier Street W
Ottawa, ON Canada, K1A 0K9 
Address Locator: 4907E

For more information on product safety

For further information contact your nearest Health Canada Product Safety Office by phone at 1-866-662-0666 (toll-free) or email at cps-spc@hc-sc.gc.ca (please indicate the province or territory from which you are corresponding). 

Stay connected with Health Canada and receive the latest advisories and product recalls using social media tools.

SOURCE Health Canada



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