Since 2000, more than 460 U.S. children have died from tip-overs
Washington, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) announced that the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee passed their bipartisan Stop Tip-overs of Unstable, Risky Dressers on Youth (STURDY) Act, legislation to prevent furniture tip-overs resulting in injury or death, and is headed to the floor for consideration by the full Senate. The bill would change the stability standard for manufacturers of clothing storage units from voluntary to mandatory—requiring companies to ensure their products are tested for safety and stability before being sold. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), tip-overs cause an average of 25,500 emergency room-treated injuries each year as children are crushed, trapped or struck by furniture, TVs and appliances. The bill, as marked up, has broad support from Parents Against Tip-overs, IKEA, the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA) and other consumer, manufacturing and industry groups, and received bipartisan support in Committee. U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-09) introduced the House companion to the bill.
“Our children’s safety is non-negotiable. Because of inadequate safety standards and testing for furniture tip-overs, families have had to endure unimaginable tragedy and loss. My STURDY Act would implement much-needed reforms to make homes safer for children. I am proud to see this legislation pass out of committee and I will work with my colleagues to get it to the President’s desk quickly,” said Senator Casey.
“No family should live in fear that their child could be severely injured or even killed by preventable accidents,” said Klobuchar. “By strengthening our furniture safety standards, the STURDY Act will help protect more children from the risks of furniture tip-overs. Now that this bill has advanced through the Senate Commerce Committee with bipartisan support, I look forward to it passing the full Senate and being signed into law.”
“Today’s committee vote is an important step forward in preventing deadly furniture tip-overs that can be tragic for children and their families,” said Blumenthal. “By establishing a process to finalize mandatory furniture stability requirements, the STURDY Act will protect millions of American households from dangerously-designed furniture, and curtail hundreds of needless injuries and deaths. As Chair of the Consumer Protection Subcommittee, I’m proud to have joined my colleagues in introducing and negotiating this legislation and I look forward to continuing to fight for its passage in the Senate.”
According to a report by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, tip-overs cause an average of 25,500 emergency room-treated injuries each year, with 44 percent of that number involving children who are crushed, trapped or struck by furniture, TVs and appliances. Product instability that leads to a tip-over incident can be caused or affected by an unstable dresser design such as a small base and top heavy, use on a sloped or unstable surface such as carpet, not using a restraint device or using a defective tip-over restraint device, heavy objects placed on top of a dresser such as a TV, or multiple dresser drawers open simultaneously. The bill also requires rigorous testing measures for furniture, simulation of real-world use and warning requirements based on the most up-to-date safety standards.
Read more about the STURDY Act here.