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U.K. Child Killed by Toppled TV Set

BASILDON, ESSEX, U.K.: A toddler was killed July 4 when a flat-screen TV fell from the wall and struck him. SkyNews (opens in new tab) said the two-year-old sustained serious head injuries and died of cardiac arrest at a local hospital after efforts to revive him failed. Authorities are treating the death as an accident.

Several reports indicate that the TV was a flat-screen model that was affixed to the wall. There’s been no more information regarding how and why it became dislodged.

The child’s death is the forth one in the United Kingdom in the last year attributed to falling TV sets. A two-year-old was killed four months ago in Edinburgh when a TV fell on her. A four-year-old died in Wales on Christmas Day after her father tripped and dropped a TV set he was carrying onto the youngster, who was crushed. One year ago, a 13-month-old child was killed when a television perched on a chest of drawers fell on him.

In St. Louis, Mo., a two-year-old child was beaten to death by his mother’s boyfriend after knocking over the family TV set. UPIreported that 23-year-old Montrell Moore punched Samar Brown several times after the baby tipped over the TV set. Montrell is being held on $1 million cash bail.

Falling TVs are more deadly to children seven and younger than car wrecks, according to a 2001 study published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine. That study found a 2.7 percent death rate among children struck by TVs, as opposed to 2.5 percent for “unintentional blunt trauma, inclusive of motor vehicle traffic-related injuries.”

The study comprised 183 youngsters hit by falling TVs, or 0.5 percent of all National Pediatric Trauma Registry admissions of the age group. Of the sample, 57 percent were boys and 76 percent were aged one to four. Ninety-five percent of the injuries occurred at home. Sixty-eight percent of the children sustained head injuries; one-third of the total required admission to intensive care. The average length of hospitalization was 3.3 days. Twenty-six percent of the total developed functional disabilities. Researchers said TV-related injuries double during the study periods of 1988-99.
-- Deborah D. McAdams