TVs injure a child every half-hour

Data published in the journal Pediatrics suggests that ill-mounted televisions injure more than 17,000 children in the U.S. every year.

Brayden Poole, aged 3, was killed by a falling TV. Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

It seems that people don't think carefully about where they put their televisions these days.

The more televisions there are around the house, the more small children risk being injured -- or even killed -- by them.

Indeed, 215 children in the U.S. were killed by televisions between 1990 and 2011.

These and other troubling statistics are included a report published in the journal Pediatrics.

An average of 17,313 children have been treated every year for TV-related injuries over the last 20 years. One child is injured every 30 minutes.

The researchers surmise that many houses now have several TVs. Living rooms are being adorned with fancy flat-screens, which means that older sets are being placed in other rooms -- such as bedrooms, where they sit on top of dressers or chests of drawers.

Around 45 percent of child deaths from TV injuries occur in bedrooms, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Flat-screens, though, aren't entirely safe from criticism. The study offered: "Lighter weights coupled with a less bulky design may make flat panels more easily tipped than CRTs (cathode ray tube) and may be contributing to the observed increase in the rate of injuries associated with falling TVs."

Last year, ABC15 TV in Arizona reported how one mother thought that putting a TV high up -- and therefore out of a child's reach -- was the sensible thing to do.

However, as Heather Poole told ABC 15, she wasn't thinking that her 3-year-old son Brayden would be spurred to touch it. It fell on him and he was crushed beneath the dresser and TV set.

"For $1.93, I could have saved my son's life," she said, talking about a simple bracket that would have secured the TV.

The safety measures parents have to take comprise a never-ending list.

No house is always completely safe. No room is entirely free from the temptation of a child's wandering mind, unaware of potential consequences.

You simply have to do what you can and think about how the world looks from your child's perspective every day of your life.

 

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