76ºF

2-year-old saves twin brother trapped under dresser

Expert offers advice for securing furniture to walls

photo

OREM, Utah – A father from Utah posted a heart-stopping video to YouTube, showing one of his 2-year-old twin boys lifting a dresser off the other boy.

"I've been a little hesitant to post this. But I feel it's not only to bring awareness, but it is also incredible," Ricky Shoff wrote on Facebook. "We are so grateful for the bond that these twin brothers share."

The 47-second video that was captured on a nursery surveillance camera Friday morning shows one child underneath the dresser, while the other child works to lift the dresser off him. He walked around, tried to lift the dresser, then pushed it off his brother.

The child was crying but appeared to be OK.

Shoff said he and his wife were upstairs and didn't hear the dresser fall. When his wife went downstairs to check on the boys, she saw the dresser tipped over, but the boys were acting fine.

When the Shoffs reviewed the camera footage, that's when they saw what happened.

"We know Bowdy was not alone in moving the dresser off of Brock," Shoff wrote. "And feel blessed that he is OK. Please make sure all your dressers are bolted and secured to the wall."

Avoiding falling furniture

Cindy Dennis with Safe Kids of Northeast Florida said it's important to secure any heavy furniture, including TVs, bookcases, fish tanks and dressers.

"A lot of times parents are aware about the tall dressers, but it doesn't have to be that tall. Just like in this video, it was a shorter dresser," Dennis said after watching Shoff's video. "There are some very inexpensive products that you can use. Brackets, braces, anchors and wall straps are not expensive at all. But they do need to be put into a stud in the wall to make sure that they're secure." 

Dennis said securing furniture to walls should be a child-proofing standard for anyone with children under 5 years old.

She also advised keeping items that might entice children to climb off the top of the furniture.

"Another good thing to do is buy drawer stops, so that a drawer will only open so far and they can't use it as a step," Dennis said.

Dennis said Shoff's son was lucky, because falling furniture can cause internal injuries, cuts bruises and can even suffocate children if they become pinned.

"Younger children are most at risk," she said. "(About) 25,000 children a year have to go to the emergency room for injuries like this, with TVs tipping over and with furniture."