Make TV safety part of your childproofing plan
Have a new flat panel TV? Where will you put your older cathode ray tube (CRT) TV? For many families, when a new TV comes into the home, the old bulky TV often moves to a child's room, basement or other location where it could pose a serious safety hazard.
Every 45 minutes in the United States, a child is rushed to the emergency room for a TV tip-over injury, and every three weeks a child dies from a television tipping over, according to a 2012 Safe Kids Worldwide report. If an unsecure TV tips over, it can seriously injure or even kill a small child, and kids younger than 5 are especially at risk.
"We're asking families to add one important, and perhaps overlooked, task to their childproofing efforts," says Kate Carr, president and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide. "Take a look around your home. Can the flat panel TV tip over? Have you moved the old CRT to a bedroom dresser where it rarely gets watched? If you aren't using it regularly, get it out of your home. The best solution is to recycle it."
Safe Kids Worldwide and the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) are teaming up to make homes safer by encouraging families to recycle older CRT TVs. Safe Kids and CEA advise parents and caregivers to do quick checks of their homes and make sure all their TVs are safely secured and properly placed.
Children can easily pull a flat panel TV off an entertainment center or table. Larger and heavier CRT TVs placed on dressers or high furniture can tip over and cause serious injuries, even death, if children climb onto the furniture.
Safe Kids encourages families to include TV safety as part of their childproofing plans by placing CRT TVs on low, stable pieces of furniture. If families no longer use their CRT TV, consider recycling it. For families with flat panel televisions, Safe Kids recommends mounting TVs to the wall to reduce the risk of TV tip-overs.
Safe Kids and CEA recommend these top tips to help keep kids safe and improve the environment:
- Secure your TV. If you have an older CRT TV, make sure you place it on a low, stable piece of furniture that is appropriate for the TV's size and weight.
- Recycle your TV. To find a location to safely and easily recycle unwanted TVs, go to www.GreenerGadgets.org.
- If you're replacing your CRT TV with a new TV, be sure it's properly secured.
For more home, family and child safety tips, visit www.safekids.org.