Flat-panel TVs tend to be top-heavy with narrow bases, which can be easily tipped, pulled, or knocked over. Older “tube” TVs tend to be heavier, and problems often occur when the TVs are moved to an unstable base or inappropriate piece of furniture.
One common cause of TV tip-overs is related to inappropriate locations for TVs. A television placed on the top of a dresser or chest of drawers is in no way safe. When a child opens drawers or climbs on an open drawer or door, the center of gravity changes, creating a risk for tip-over.
Use products specifically designed for television anchoring to secure all your TVs. Currently, TVs are not required to come with anchors, but there are flat-screen TV anchoring products available. These products should come with an assortment of the required bolts that attach the anchoring devices to the pre-threaded holes on the back of each TV.
Safety straps designed for anchoring TVs can be used to secure a TV to the wall studs or the back of a properly anchored piece of furniture designed to hold the size and weight of your TV.
Another option for flat-panel TVs is to install wall mounts, which are secured to the studs in the wall. Whether by installing TV anchoring straps or a wall mount, attaching the anchoring device securely to the wall studs with the appropriate length screws is critical for safety. Plastic hollow wall anchors will not be secure enough.
Ditch the old
Many homes have multiple TVs, so when new TVs are purchased, the older ones move to bedrooms, basements, or other areas where children could still have access. Please consider recycling your old CRT TVs.
Even when supervised, curious or active children quickly find trouble. Yet tip-over injuries are preventable with proper anchoring.
Colleen Driscoll, Executive Director, International Association for Child Safety, [email protected]