Aurora tragedy leads to warning about TV accidents

In recognition of National TV Safety Day on Saturday, Attorney General Lisa Madigan alerted Illinois parents and caregivers about the serious risk for injury and death due to television tip-over accidents.

Madigan issued the alert in light of an increasing number of television tip-over accidents recently reported, including the tragic death of a 4-year-old Aurora girl recently.

Cyliyah Yarbrough was killed Jan. 26 when a television fell on her head. The girl’s mother called police about 5:49 p.m. that night to their apartment in the 1200 block of Nantucket Road, according to Aurora police.

The girl was taken to Presence Mercy Medical Center in Aurora where she was pronounced dead at 6:34 p.m., police said.

At the time she was killed, her mother and a younger sibling were home in the apartment, police said.

Studies show that every 45 minutes a child visits an emergency room because of a tip-over accident, and every three weeks, a child dies from a television tipping over, Madigan said. A majority of these children are 5 years old or younger.

Madigan urged families to follow guidelines provided by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to secure televisions in their homes:

Anchor televisions and furniture to the wall or floor.

Place televisions on sturdy, low-base stands or furniture, or anchor the furniture and the television on its base, and push the television as far back to the wall as possible.

Keep remote controls, toys and other items of interest to children off of television stands or furniture.

Keep television and cable cords out of reach.

Ensure that freestanding kitchen ranges and stoves are installed with anti-tip brackets.

“It’s important for parents to learn about these hidden hazards in our homes,” Madigan said.

As more families purchase flat-screen televisions, their older, heavier television models are moved to bedrooms or basements where children may play unsupervised, she said.