The dangers to children posed by TVs, appliances, and furniture cannot be understated. Many parents are unaware of the frequency of deaths and serious injuries sustained by children who were playing near an item the parents believed to be safe and adequately secured.
According to a report by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), more than 25,000 children are injured every year in tip-over accidents involving TVs, furniture, and appliances. In addition to injuries requiring emergency room treatment, 349 people—84 percent of whom were children under the age of 9—were killed between 2000 and 2011 in such tip-over incidents. Forty-one of these fatalities occurred in 2011, alone. Other studies have indicated that one child died every three weeks between 2000 and 2010 after being hit by a falling TV.
The CPSC has warned that children may sustain severe head and other crushing injuries when heavy furniture, TVs, or appliances fall on them, while others may be suffocated. Parents are urged to securely anchor their TVs, appliances, and furniture to walls and floors and to supervise children while they are playing in rooms that contain such items.
In March 2014, a two-year-old boy was critically injured after both a TV and the dresser on which the TV had been placed fell on him as he was climbing the dresser. In June 2014, a toddler died after a dresser fell on her. She and her twin sister had been playing on the dresser, and caused the dresser to topple. In July, two young sisters, aged 2 and 3, were killed after a dresser on which they were playing fell on them. Both children died of asphyxiation from compression of their chests. In 2013, two types of children’s dressers were recalled after three toddlers were killed. In one case, the child suffocated after climbing into a dresser drawer, which caused the dresser to fall and trap the child beneath it.
Who may be held responsible if your child is injured or killed in an accident involving a falling TV, furniture, or appliance? Depending upon the circumstances, several individuals or entities may be liable for injuries or deaths sustained in this manner.
Child-injury attorney Jeff Killino has achieved national recognition for his dedication to keeping children safe and for seeking justice from those who have caused injury or death to children through negligence or a defective children’s product. If your child has been injured or killed while playing on or near a TV, dresser, or appliance, or through the use of a defective product or the negligence of an individual entrusted with your child’s care, you may be entitled to compensation for the damages suffered by you and your child. Attorney Killino and his team of defective children’s products and wrongful death lawyers will help you seek justice from those responsible for your child’s injury or death.
Legal Liability for Tip-over Injuries or Deaths
Tip-over accidents resulting in injuries or death to children may result from a defect in the product that fell on the child and/or the negligence of someone who has been entrusted with a child’s care. In some cases, more than one individual or entity may be legally responsible for the injuries or deaths sustained in such incidents.
Negligence of Babysitters or Other Caregivers
In many cases, children are injured or killed as a result of the negligence of a daycare center and/or its employees or the negligence of another individual who has undertaken the responsibility to watch over a child. Damages may be recovered on behalf of such victims through suits brought by personal injury or wrongful death lawyers. If, for example, a daycare center fails to adequately secure a TV, appliance, or furniture item and one of these items falls and injures or kills a child, the center itself may be found directly liable for the child’s injuries or death.
If the injury or death of a child results from the negligence of a daycare center employee who, for example, has failed to properly supervise a child while the child is near such items, the daycare employee may be found directly liable for the child’s injuries or death. In this case, the daycare center may also be found vicariously (indirectly) liable for the injuries or death caused by the negligence of its employee. In addition, if the daycare center is found to have been negligent in hiring or training the employee, the center may be held directly liable, as well.
Direct liability may also attach to babysitters or nannies who fail to adequately supervise a child and to individuals who watch children in their own homes and fail to properly secure TVs, furniture, and other heavy objects. The duty imposed on all such caregivers is one of reasonable care that would be taken by a person of ordinary prudence.
Defects in Products
In some cases, the manufacturers and others in the chain of a product’s distribution may be found liable under a state’s product-liability law for injuries or deaths caused by a defect in the design or manufacture of an item or by a failure to warn of the item’s dangers. A manufacturer’s failure to warn of the tip-over dangers of dressers, TVs, and appliances, for example, may be found to constitute a defect leading to liability of the manufacturer and others for injuries or deaths caused by a tip-over accident.
Certain products may also be found defective in design if adequate safety restraints are not included with the product. Thus, a plaintiff might argue that the failure by a manufacturer of children’s dressers to include hardware and instructions for attaching a dresser to a wall should result in liability for injuries or deaths caused by a dresser’s falling on a child.
Obtain Expert Assistance from Child-injury Attorney Jeff Killino
If your child has been injured or killed in an accident caused by a defective children’s product or the negligence of a person or entity entrusted with your child’s care, nationally-recognized child-injury attorney Jeff Killino and his team of child injury and child accident attorneys will fight for justice on behalf of you and your child.