Pediatric ER doctor cautions about home safety risk

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – The tragic death of a Pompano toddler inside her family’s home is highlighting an overlooked risk to small children: The potential to become trapped and crushed under furnishings and appliances.

“Children have a tendency to be curious. They climb and these pieces of furniture can fall on them and cause not only broken bones but internal injuries in the chest, abdomen and head,” said Dr. Rosa Kotzen, an Emergency Room physician with Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.

While the dynamics may seem difficult, Kotzen said all it takes is a little leverage.

“They can pull out drawers they can pull out a chair they can step on other toys and objects which they try to climb. Some kids are just really great at kind of scaling up objects,” Kotzen said.

It can happen in a moment’s distraction.

“It just takes seconds to get trapped underneath furniture, an object, and not really know where the child is for that split second and the injuries happen so quickly,” Kotzen said.

The isles of many home improvement stores carry a simple product that can be a lifesaver.

For around $10, safety straps provide a way to secure furniture and heavy objects to a wall, keeping them from falling on small children.

For more information on home safety with young children, visit this page.

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