Two children have died after IKEA dressers tipped over and fell on them, which has prompted the company to issue a recall for 27 million chests and dressers that have been sold since 2002.
If not securely anchored to a wall, the furniture can tip over and trap a child beneath it, causing injury or death. Because of this, IKEA is asking consumers to move the furniture into storage where a child can't access it until it can be properly secured to the wall.
Although it's a recall, USA Today notes, the company isn't asking for people to return the product. Instead, IKEA has announced a repair program that includes a free wall anchoring kit for the chests and dressers, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced Wednesday.
The products affected by this recall have been sold at IKEA stores since 2002, and include MALM 3- and 4-drawer chests and two styles of MALM 6-drawer chests, as well as other chests and dressers, ranging in price from $80 to $200. Those who need a free wall anchoring kit can visit an IKEA retail store, visit IKEA's website here, or by calling 888-966-4532.
Injuries, deaths reported
This recall comes after IKEA and the CPSC have received multiple reports of incidents involving the products.
In February 2014, a 2-year-old Pennsylvania boy died when a MALM 6-drawer chest tipped over and fatally pinned him against his bed. And in June 2014, a 23-month-old boy from Washington state died when he was trapped beneath a 3-drawer MALM chest that tipped over.
In addition to the fatalities, the company has received at least 14 reports of tip-over incidents involving MALM chests, resulting in four injuries. And since 1989, IKEA is aware of three reports of deaths from other models of IKEA chests and dressers tipping over.
CPSC is using this recall to remind parents that it is important to secure all furniture, appliances and televisions to the wall to prevent them from falling if a child decides to climb on it.
Between 2000 and 2010, CPSC received 245 reports of furniture tipping over and killing children 8 years old and younger. In 56 percent of those incidents, the child was crushed by the weight of the object, with the majority suffering fatal injuries to the head, a CPSC report says.
The CPSC notes that falling furniture kills a child every two weeks and injures a child every 24 minutes, data show.