Nonprofit secures furniture to keep it from falling on children

Updated: Jan. 3, 2017 at 11:02 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - A video popular on social media shows a boy trying to save his twin brother from a toppled dresser.

Those images have renewed concerns about falling furniture.

The video, which has gotten millions of views, shows Bowdy and Brock trying to climb onto the drawers of their dresser then Bowdy becoming pinned when it tips over.

The twins' mother, Kayli Shoff, says she posted the video to increase awareness of the importance of anchoring furniture.

In Shreveport, a nonprofit will secure the furniture for free.

The Jackson Griffin Foundation was started after a toppled television killed 4-year-old Jackson Griffin in 2013.

:When Jackson passed away, we thought it was a freak accident," said Amber Mahoney, the child's aunt and the organization's treasurer. "We didn't realize it was something that happened so often."

Falling TVs, furniture and appliances kill 1 child every 2 weeks, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

In the ArkLaTex, there have been 2 relatively recent deaths stemming from similar causes.

A Howard County, Ark., toddler died Jan. 29 from injuries suffered when a dresser and TV toppled over on her.

Her mother told EMS personnel that 4-year-old Ella was in bed watching television when there came a crash. The woman rushed to the child's bedroom and found that a large, older-style television set and the dresser on which the TV had been sitting had fallen on top of Ella's head and chest.

In June 2015, 1-year-old Ja'Shaylyn Casson was crushed by a dresser.

Her mother, Shayla Robinson, said she was asleep in her living room with her newborn when the accident happened.

People often blame the parents when tragedies such as these are publicized, Mahoney said.

"Well, I know that when my brother and sister-in-law lost Jackson, they dealt with a lot of people getting online making comments about 'you shouldn't be letting the TV babysit your kids,' 'you shouldn't be doing this,' 'you shouldn't be doing that'.

The fact of the matter is nobody's a perfect parent," Mahoney said.

But with a simple device that can be bought from Lowe's or Walmart, she said, parents can safely secure furniture to a wall.

Or they could just give her a call.

"You can just find Tim Mahoney and message him and he'll get it all set up. And set up a time to come out and get it all done for you, get it mounted and anchored, whatever you are needing done. He'll do TVs in any child's bedroom or playroom. He'll anchor furniture anywhere in the house. And he won't charge you anything for it."

The Mahoneys' nonprofit also donates money to families who have lost a child.

Visit the group's website to donate to the program or to have your furniture mounted or anchored.

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