ACCC leads safety campaign

Alert for unstable furniture and TVs.

The ACCC is co-leading an international safety campaign urging parents and carers to anchor unstable furniture and large TVs to the wall to prevent infant deaths and serious injuries.

The consumer watchdog is joining the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and 18 other regulators from around the world in alerting consumers to the dangers of unstable furniture and large TVs. To combat the risks posed by toppling furniture and TVs, the ACCC and state and territory consumer safety regulators have developed a National Toppling Furniture and Television Safety Strategy.

Suppliers are also being urged to take immediate steps to improve the stability of these products and supply anchors at point of sale.

The ACCC and consumer safety regulators recently surveyed over 200 furniture and television retailers in six cities across Australia to determine how retailers are adopting new industry guidelines published by the National Retail Association.

Retailers should provide anchoring devices with household furniture and large TVs at the point of purchase to prevent them from toppling onto children, ACCC deputy chair, Delia Rickard said. “Our market surveillance found that only 12 per cent of retailers supplied anchors with all the furniture that required them, which is not good enough.  We call on industry to make them available in every store,” she said.

“The ACCC will continue to work with retailers to ensure appropriate anchoring devices are supplied to consumers, better in-store signage is displayed, and warning labels are affixed to products,” she said. “Toppling furniture kills at least one child in Australia every year and every day, around seven Australians are expected to have serious injuries requiring hospital treatment from toppling furniture.”

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