United States

New Furniture Tip-Over Dangers: Smaller, But Not Safer

Consumer Reports continues to investigate the stability of dressers

Every 17 minutes, an unsecured piece of furniture, appliance, or television tips over and injures or kills someone in the U.S. Most of the victims are children under 6 years old.

During Consumer Reports’ ongoing investigation into the stability of dressers, newly released government data show dressers 30 inches tall and under have been linked to deaths.

“We found that just because a dress low and seems stable, like one that’s three drawers high, it can still pose a deadly tip-over risk to small children in your home,” said Rachel Rabkin Peachman, Consumer Reports Special Projects Editor.

Records released in June showed that at least five fatal tip-overs were linked to dressers that measured 30 inches or lower.

As part of its continued analysis, Consumer Reports conducted 3 tip-over tests on 17 dresser models marketed as measuring 30 inches tall and under - to see if they are prone to tipping over.

Only five of the dressers passed all of Consumer Reports’ tests, including the $150 IKEA NORDLI, showing that a stable, affordable dresser at this height is possible.

“Companies have the ability to do something about this epidemic. We’ve found that it is possible to build more stable dressers of any height. And our findings highlight the need for strong safety standards for all dressers, not just taller ones,” said Peachman.

And that's why Consumer Reports is pushing for mandatory safety standards for dressers of all sizes, and says all furniture should be properly anchored to a wall.

Click here for Consumer Reports's complete furniture test results along with a video showing step by step how to properly anchor furniture to a wall.

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