U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Warns: “Kids Are Idiots.”

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s newsfeed is a daily source of hilarity. “Barbecue recalled for fire hazard!” it warns. “Trampolines recalled for falling risk!” it hollers and cries. I rarely click though: the actual details could only disappoint. I like living in a world where the government needs to issue daily reminders verbalizing common sense.

And they’re at it again, this time warning about the dangers of precariously balanced pieces of furniture. ” The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is warning parents and caregivers about the dangers of televisions and heavy furniture tipping over and killing young children. The number of TV tip-over deaths reported to CPSC during the first seven months of 2006 is twice the typical yearly average.”

The lesson? That 36 inch plasma screen should not be balanced on wobbling legs composed entirely of empty beer cans. Your iron maiden? It should not be left open and placed on roller skates. An armoire should not be stored diagonally, propped up only with a creaking broom. And so on. BEWARE.

CPSC Warns about TV, Large Furniture Tip-Over Dangers [CPSC]


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  1. DeeJayQueue says:

    Ya know, maybe they should. Maybe the kids who are pulling TVs and dressers down on themselves deserve what they get. Then they wouldn’t do that anymore.

  2. Basic Darwinism, far as I can tell. :-p

    My favorite warning, though, came from a local news team in Winston-Salem that did a two-parter on the dangers of portable soccer goals. Choking, partial crushing–it had it all, none of it actually possible.

  3. Papercutninja says:

    Dead kids = much more gooder. Believe me, the FIRST time i see sticky small handprints on my plasma, that kid is getting left on the doorstep of the nearest church.

  4. Ishmael says:

    Had a call from a client the other day with a claim question. Bought himself a brand-new, huge plasma TV. Had the guys from the store deliver it to his home. As he was showing the delivery men out, they hear a crash.

    His four year old son had pulled the TV down off the stand and broken it.

    I asked him if he was calling about making a claim, or looking for the phone number to an adoption agency.

  5. Triteon says:

    Andrew stole my though– Darwinism at it’s best.
    DJQ also got it right. My kid once put oatmeal in the “mouth” of the VCR “because it was hungry” (oh, kids are so cute). The ensuing >pop

  6. AcidReign says:

    …..One of my kids did the chest-of-drawers climb thing like in the picture above. Fortunately, I had bought her a cheap Big Lots model, and the drawers just fell apart. Kids will tear up whatever furniture you get them, so don’t blow a big amount of money on it…

    …..Many dresser models now come with a wall anchor, but most people don’t bother. It’s not like a tiny screw into sheetrock or plaster is going to stop it from tipping over, anyway.

  7. Demingite says:

    I think it’s very reasonable for the government to issue reminders about “common sense” of this sort — better than having one child get killed. None of us is omniscient, and even a very intelligent person could use a prompt about, say, how their child may want to “play with” (climb on, etc.) their new four-drawer filing cabinet. Again, a little extra caution and occasional intelligence-insulting is better than anyone losing a child.

  8. GenXCub says:

    The lesson learned is: Don’t have kids and don’t allow them in your home.

    I follow that one to the letter.

  9. HawkWolf says:

    common sense is only common sense if it’s common and sensical. If it’s not common any more, surprise! it’s not common sense.

    Anyway. This reminds me of the Korean movie, “A Tale of Two Sisters”… reasons not to let kids near your armoire.

  10. etinterrapax says:

    I suppose I ought to get busy anchoring my bookcases to the wall. Then again, I do still have some months left before he can walk.

    See, this is what happens when people think playpens are cruel. Kids get trapped under something heavy.

  11. Soulgenesis says:

    I follow GenXcub’s advice. No kids. Without them, I can freely buy a 60in. plasma, with no financial worries.

    other than debt from the tv, not if the kid’s going to eat today. ;)

  12. politicaobscura says:

    This is from a website that seeks to prevent such injuries from happening… it is not a laughing matter:

    “Our beautiful daughter Meghan died December 18th, 2004 at the age of 3 from injuries sustained as a result of her dresser falling on top of her in the early morning hours while we slept. We presume she was climbing in the drawers. We did not hear the dresser fall, she did not or could not cry. She died within minutes. Tragically, her death was preventable, for if we had secured her dresser to the wall, she would be with us today. We never thought her dresser, a small, heavy, well made and well known top of the line piece, would tip or fall, let alone kill anyone, we were horribly wrong. She has left us, her twin brother, and her older brother all devastated at her loss.”


  13. juri squared says:

    I do have to agree with Demingate. It’s one of those things that seem like common sense, but I know I’d never thought of tethering my heavy furniture to the wall.

    How is a first-time parent going to know their kid has figured out how to play mountain climber? When they try it. By then, it may be too late to think “Hey, I should tie all my furniture to the wall.”

    The only reason I knew about tethering furniture is because I recently joined the ranks of expecting moms and have been reading. A lot.

  14. aka Cat says:

    How hard is it to remember the dumb shit you and your friends did, or thought about doing, when you were a kid?

    Just assume that your kid is going to do all of them.

  15. AcidReign says:

    …..No doubt. My wife and I once walked into the living room of our newly bought house, and saw our 15 month old son (who was supposed to be napping in his crib) atop the built-in shelves in the living room. (Kid can climb anything, even to this day. Kid is now 13, and I swear he could climb a 30 foot sheet of ice…)

    …..Panic time! Securing tip-over-prone stuff is a good idea in theory, but unless you secure it into a stud, it’s of dubious value… A cardboard-like Big Lots dresser fell on my kid at age five. He lived, and screamed like he was dying. Just sayin’…