Last Sunday, a historic 114 million viewers huddled around televisions to watch a nail-biting end to Super Bowl XLIX. While the common household television serves as a centerpiece for many American family gatherings, it can also pose unforeseen dangers to children.
In fact, every 45 minutes a child in the United States visits the emergency room after being injured by a falling television. Every three weeks, a child dies from injuries caused by a TV tip-over. The Safe Kids Coalition and the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) recognized National TV Safety Day on Jan. 31 to spread awareness of TV tip-overs. The CEA urges parents to conduct quick safety checks to ensure every television in the house is properly fixed into place.
There are a few simple safety steps parents can take to childproof their televisions:
Secure your TV: If you have an older TV, make sure you either secure it to a wall or place it on a low, stable piece of furniture that is appropriate for the TV's size and weight. Heavier, box-style cathode ray tube TVs placed on dressers or high furniture can tip over and cause serious injuries, even death, if children climb onto the furniture.
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Recycle your old TV: If you have a small child running the house, it might be time to retire the old, heavier TV. If you decide to upgrade, take the old TV to a location that recycles unwanted TVs, which can be found at GreenerGadgets.org.
Secure your flat-panel TV: If you're replacing your cathode ray tube TV with a new TV, be sure your flat-panel TV is properly secured with a mount that has a safety certification by an independent laboratory (such as UL, CSA, ETL).
When flat-panel TVs are brought into homes, heavier, box-style TVs are often moved to other rooms and placed on dressers or high furniture, where they may be used with game consoles, DVD players or VCRs. Remember, these locations are safety hazards even though they might seem like the most logical new home for old TVs.
To learn TV safety tips, visit: http://bit.ly/1yC11jY