On July 22, 2015, IKEA and the Consumer Products Safety Commission announced a safety warning and repair program affecting 27 million units of furniture sold by the Swedish retailer. The announcement recognized that unless chests and dressers are securely fastened to the wall, they pose a serious tip-over hazard, particularly to small children. Kits containing attachment hardware and warning labels will be made available without charge to purchasers of the designated furniture units. IKEA acknowledged that the repair program was prompted by the deaths of two 2-year-old boys who were fatally injured after MALMdressers tipped over and fell on them.
The law firm of Feldman Shepherd has been retained to represent the families of both victims. A toddler died on February 25, 2014 at his home in West Chester, Pennsylvania when a six-drawer MALM dresser toppled onto him. Another child was crushed by a three-drawer MALM dresser on June 15, 2014 at his home in the State of Washington. The litigation will be led by the Feldman Shepherd product defect team of Alan M. Feldman, Daniel J. Mann and Edward S. Goldis.
Many consumers are unaware of the danger of furniture and appliance tip-overs, and manufacturers have not provided adequate warnings, instructions and hardware to address this important home safety issue. In addition, as Elliot Kaye, the Chairman of the CPSC has observed, the industry is capable of making more stable furniture, but has “lack[ed] the will to genuinely solve the problem.” According to the CPSC, a child dies every two weeks and a child is injured every twenty-four minutes as a result of a furniture or TV tip-over.
Feldman Shepherd Wohlgelernter Tanner Weinstock Dodig LLP has handled cases producing some of the largest verdicts and settlements in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. The firm represents plaintiffs in significant personal injury, class action, and other complex civil litigation. Clients include victims of medical malpractice, defective products, unsafe workplaces, motor vehicle accidents, legal malpractice and insurer misconduct.