– This feels weird. Being in front of a computer in blogging again. I guess it’s like riding a bike…. once you fall off, I guess you can just get up and get right back on. Since the last time I wrote; a lot has happened to me. I filmed an entire special with HGVT, gained 10 pounds, dyed my hair, moved into a new studio/show room (MORE ON THAT LATER), and became involved with The Anchor It campaign. I figured my blogging come back would be a perfect way to talk more about something dangerous thats going on every day, right in our own homes.
As you may have seen on TV, earlier this month the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission launched the Anchor It! campaign to help educate parents and caregivers about the dangers of furniture and TV tip-over incidents in the home and to urge them to take the simple, low-cost actions to prevent these tragedies.
As a spokesperson for this campaign and on a personal level, this issue hits close to home – literally inside the home for me and many other parents and caregivers across the country. When my son was younger he too had a similar incident. While he is OK, I saw first-hand how the weight of a small child climbing these items, such as a dresser, can create a dangerous tip-over scenario – one in which tipping furniture or a falling TV can impact a child with thousands of pounds of force. Until that moment, I did not even know of this threat inside our home.
Did you know that every 24 minutes tipped furniture or a falling TV sends an injured child in the United States goes to the emergency room?
While the threat of tip-overs is serious, the solution is actually simple.
I encourage all parents and caregivers to visit AnchorIt.Gov to get more information on the dangers of unanchored furniture and take the necessary steps to ensure your home is safe. Anchoring is easy, inexpensive and only takes five minutes.
These simple safety steps include:
- Avoid displaying or storing items in places where kids might be tempted to climb up to reach for them.
- If purchasing a new TV, consider recycling older ones not currently used. If moving the older TV to another room, be sure it is anchored properly to the wall.
- Keep heavier items on lower shelves or in lower drawers.
- Always buy and install low-cost anchoring devices that can prevent TVs, dressers, bookcases and other furniture from tipping.
- TVs should always be placed on a sturdy, low base and pushed as far back as possible, particularly if anchoring is not possible.
In addition to taking these safety steps, I encourage you to download the Anchor It! tip card and informational poster and watch the new video PSA – all of which are available in both English and Spanish. Share these items with your friends, family members, schools and community – and if you share them on your social networks, join in the conversation by using the hashtag #AnchorIt.
Nothing will bring back the children we have lost to these tragedies, but if I can help prevent even a single additional tip-over incident from injuring or killing another child, my work supporting this campaign will be a success. If you have children in your home, I urge you to go to AnchorIt.gov and ensure that you anchor your furniture and televisions to protect children from tip-over incidents.