Safety Alert: The Hidden Dangers in Your Home

By reporter

Your bookcase may be dangerous. Your dresser, too. But what kind of threats do inanimate objects pose? 

Falling furniture injures more than 2500 children annually. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, furniture tip-overs send one child to the hospital every 24 minutes in the U.S. Since 2000, 200 of these injuries have resulted in death. The good news is that these deaths are preventable, provided your furniture is properly secured. 

Anytime is a good time to secure your safety. But it is particularly important to look out for dangers if you plan to shift your furniture. As Tishrei approaches, homes all over the globe are preparing for the influx of family, guests, and change of pace that Yom Tov entails. Mapping out sleeping arrangements and readying one’s self for the holy days are just a few of the things that occupy this hectic time.

But with makeshift spaces being constructed and little feet running around, you might not be aware of the hidden dangers to which you are exposing yourself and your children. We spoke with expert carpenter Shmuel Edelman of WoodWiz Carpentry & Home Repairs and he shared with us the most common safety hazards that often go unnoticed.  Be proactive: take a quick 10 minutes to walk around your home and identify problem spaces, allowing you to prepare for a safe Yom Tov with family. 

Beware the un-anchored bookcase

Seforim shaffes are the focal point of many living spaces. But if they haven’t been anchored to a wall, they are frighteningly easy to tip over – especially by little children. It takes more than the stern “don’t climb the shelf!” to ensure your child’s safety. Anchoring your bookcases to a wall is the best way to prevent those little hands from causing big injuries.

Children’s rooms

Take a look at your dressers, free-standing closets, and changing stations to make sure they are properly secured in place. All it takes is an unsuspecting child perching himself on an open drawer to extend  his reach, causing the dresser to topple over him. Such tragedies could easily be prevented if proper precautions are taken. Don’t wait for an accident. Identify which items in your children’s room are a tip-risk and take the steps necessary to secure them before guests arrive.

The Toy Room 

Long Yom Tov afternoons are often spent in the playroom. This Yom Tov, make sure your children enjoy both a fun – and safe – play environment. We know you’re careful about throwing away those choking hazards, but there’s a lot more you can do to ensure your children’s (or grandchildren’s) safety. Familiar with that cube storage unit overflowing with toys? How about the large dollhouse standing taller than your toddler? Make sure these structures are anchored properly and avoid potential danger. 

Even temporary structures can cause lasting harm

People come up with all sorts of innovative solutions to make the most of tight spaces for Yom Tov. From free-standing shelves bearing heavy or sharp objects to plywood propped over folding tables to extend seating space (no one wants to be there when that table topples during soup course!), we’ve seen it all. While these quick solutions might be helpful in the moment, they are often not secure and can pose major safety risks. For instance, that free-standing shelf can be tipped over with a modicum of effort and cause injury. This year, consider ways that you can create a more stable solution that won’t put your family in harm’s way.

With these tips in mind, we hope that you have a sweet, happy, and SAFE New Year! 

For assistance with safety-proofing your home visit or call / whatsapp Shmuel Edelman at 718-288-8899.

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