CHICAGO (CBS) — The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday passed a bill introduced by Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Illinois) that seeks to prevent children from being killed or injured by tipping furniture.
The Stop Tip-Overs of Unstable, Risky Dressers on Youth, or STURDY Act of 2019 (H.R. 2211) passed Tuesday by a unanimous voice vote, according to a news release.
The bill directs the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission to set up standards to prevent tipping furniture, which poses a serious risk to children. Furniture, TVs, and other heavy items found in homes can fall and leave children crushed or trapped, Schakowsky’s office emphasized.
“Every hour, of every day, approximately 3 children are getting injured – over 25,400 per year. Between 2000 and 2011, these tip-overs have resulted in at least 363 fatalities, with most of the innocent victims being less than 8 years old,” Schakowsky said in a news release. “I’m proud that the House has passed the STURDY Act today, so that we can protect children from these preventable accidents and spare their families these painful situations, resulting simply from a piece of furniture.”
Particularly dangerous are chests, bureaus, and dressers – opening drawers or doors can cause top-heavy units to tip over, Schakowsky’s office said. Further, young children often climb on such pieces of furniture unsupervised and increase the risk of an accident, Schakowsky’s office said.
There have been numerous toddler deaths linked to falling dressers in recent years, Schakowsky’s office said.
The legislation has the support of several consumer groups, Schakowsky’s office said.