Safety advocates call on furniture anchor manufacturers to test their products to ensure safety
WASHINGTON, DC – Consumer Reports (CR) welcomes the recall of New Age Industries plastic anchor tip kits. Plastic zip tie tip restraints can become brittle and break over time while furniture is anchored to the wall, posing a tip-over risk. New Age Industries has supplied millions of plastic anchor kits to thirty-one furniture companies nationwide. CR urges all consumers to participate in the recall and replace their plastic anchors with metal ones tested for safety.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), at least 234 people died from clothing storage furniture tip-overs from 2000 to April 2022, and approximately 5,300 people are sent to the emergency department every year. Dressers and similar furniture manufactured after September 1, 2023, are federally required to meet stability standards, but there is no mandatory standard for furniture anchors. Consumer Reports, Parents Against Tip-Overs (PAT), and other safety advocates recommend that consumers anchor their furniture and that furniture anchor manufacturers test their products to ensure they are safe for real-world use.
“Properly anchoring furniture to the wall can save lives, and we strongly urge anyone who thinks they may be eligible for a replacement to contact Alliance4Safety, the group coordinating this recall,” said Gabe Knight, safety policy analyst for Consumer Reports. “Even if you are not eligible for a replacement, Consumer Reports recommends that all consumers swap plastic zip tie restraints with anchors that use metal brackets and nylon straps or wire cables. In this rapidly changing marketplace in which unstable furniture remains in countless homes across the country, anchoring with durable anti-tip restraints remains critical.
“While PAT has always advocated for properly anchoring all furniture with drawers, doors, and shelves to the wall, it has long been a concern of many parent and consumer advocates that there is currently no mandatory standard for furniture anchors,” Kimberly Amato, Vice Chair of Parents Against Tip-Overs, and Chair of the ASTM task group on Material Interaction. “Properly anchoring your furniture to the wall is vital to prevent tip-overs. This recall makes it clear that the type of anchor you use matters. We applaud this recall and strongly encourage all furniture anchor manufacturers to test their anchors for real-world use to ensure they will work as intended.”
According to the CPSC, consumers should immediately check if their clothing storage unit has a date of manufacture sticker or stamp of November 2019 or later. If your tip kit is made of plastic, consumers should contact Alliance4Safety for a free replacement tip kit. Furniture companies have received two reports of the New Age tip kits breaking, though no injuries have been reported. The CPSC advises consumers to keep children away from the unit while waiting for a replacement tip kit. Visit the CPSC’s website for information on how to contact Alliance4Safety.
Consumer Reports shares tips to help caregivers make a safe choice when shopping and installing a dresser or other new furniture:
- Ask the retailer or manufacturer when the dresser was made and if it complies with the new STURDY Act requirements. If they are unsure or can’t answer, take a pass.
- Make sure the dresser comes with an anchor kit—and use it. The STURDY Act requires that all dressers covered under the rule have to be sold with one.
- Bear in mind that the new rules only apply to dressers and other clothing storage furniture, not bookshelves, entertainment centers, televisions, or tables, which could pose tip-over risks to kids. So, for anyone with small kids in the house, the good advice remains: when in doubt, anchor it. CR has a video tutorial that can teach you how.
- CR recommends using restraints with metal brackets and nylon straps or wire cables for maximum stability.
Media Contact: Emily Akpan, email@example.com