The Hidden Danger of the Household Oven, and How to Keep Your Kids Safe
Without taking proper safety measures, a kitchen oven can easily tip over, making it a death trap for children.
Each year, children are injured and even killed when ovens tip over, but the incidents can be prevented by making sure the oven has a simple anti-tip bracket installed.
He pointed out that the oven door can become a step for kids looking to see what's going on. With a little added weight, the appliance can start to fall.
"So it doesn't take a whole lot of effort to cause this to happen," Kaufmann said.
Using a mannequin and an oven donated by Top Line Appliance Center, he showed Chief Investigative Correspondent Lisa Guerrero what a tip-over looks like and how it can crush a child.
But that's not the only danger.
As an oven tips, a pot of boiling water on the stove can come crashing down, causing further injuries.
"I only could imagine if that pot were boiling and that was a real child," Guerrero said. "That would be a devastating tragedy."
Guerrero and Kaufmann set off on a mission, conducting surprise inspections around a New Jersey neighborhood to see how many people had ovens that are potentially dangerous.
Dana is a stay-at-home mom with two children, ages 4 and 1.
A quick inspection showed that her oven was not outfitted with the anti-tip bracket.
"It's ... unsafe," Kaufmann said. "Kind of an injury waiting to happen."
"It's scary," Dana said. "There's a lot of things we do to protect these kids and this is one of them I never thought about."
And it was more of the same throughout the neighborhood. Many residents were shocked when Inside Edition pointed out the dangers.
"Never thought that could be a hazard," said Joyce, a homeowner down the block.
"I'm really surprised," added another neighbor, Glenn.
So what can you do to make your oven safer?
First, Kaufmann said, buy a safety device that prevents your oven door from opening. Then, install an anti-tip bracket, which is screwed into the wall or floor and keeps the oven from falling over.
New ovens come with anti-tip brackets, but if yours doesn't have one, you can pick one up at any home improvement store for less than $10.
You could save a life.
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