Kirkland’s Recalls Dressers Due to Tip-Over Hazard

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The furniture and home goods retailer Kirkland’s on Wednesday recalled about 3,000 of two styles of dressers—the Black Wash Mirrored Chest and the Six-Drawer Camille Chest—because of their potential to tip over and cause serious injury or death. The recall alert, issued jointly by Kirkland’s (not to be confused with Costco’s house brand, Kirkland Signature) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, says the dressers do not comply with the industry’s voluntary safety standard and are unstable if not anchored to a wall.

Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled dressers and place them in a room that children cannot access.  

At this time, there are no reported incidents associated with the recalled dressers, which were sold at Kirkland’s stores nationwide and online at the Kirkland’s website from January 2016 through May 2019.

One of the dresser models has five drawers and a mirrored and black wash finish, measures 35 inches tall, and weighs about 47 pounds. The SKU number, 177373, can be found on the Kirkland’s price label attached to the back of the furniture hangtag, if you still have it. The other recalled dresser model has six drawers and a cream distressed finish, measures 36 inches tall, and weighs about 75 pounds. The chest’s SKU number is 145191. If you are not sure whether your product is affected, contact Kirkland’s (see below).

This recall is only the second announced by the CPSC since the fall of 2017, when Ikea reannounced its recall of 17.3 million dressers because of tip-over injuries and deaths. This is despite the fact that numerous dressers on the market fail to stay upright when put through basic stability testing, a voluntary standard that involves hanging a 50-pound weight on a single open drawer while the others are closed. (The other recall since 2017 was issued by South Shore and involved the Libra 3-drawer dresser, which was linked to the death of a 2-year-old child and at least one other injury.)
Tip-Over Trouble
Approximately one child dies every two weeks and one person is injured every 15 minutes when a piece of furniture or a television falls over onto them, according to the CPSC. Counting dresser tip-overs alone, there are thousands of incidents every year, most of them affecting children.

Though the industry’s voluntary safety standard was recently amended so that shorter dressers, not just tall ones, are also subject to it, consumer safety advocates, including those at Consumer Reports, do not think the standard is tough enough to prevent tip-over injuries and deaths. For example, many advocates would like to see the testing standard improved by raising the test weight to 60 pounds and assessing the product’s stability while more than one drawer is open. This would more accurately reflect the weight of a young child and the way people use dressers. 

To address the problem, advocates are urging Congress to pass the Stop Tip-overs of Unstable, Risky Dressers on Youth (STURDY) act. The legislation would require the CPSC to create a mandatory rule for dressers that is stronger than the industry’s current voluntary standard. The bill was introduced by Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., in April the House and Sens. Bob Casey, D-Pa., Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., in June.
What You Can Do
If you own a recalled dresser from Kirkland’s, you can return it to a Kirkland’s store and receive a refund. To contact the company, call 877-541-4855 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, email, or go to the Kirkland’s website and click on Chest Recall under Customer Service at the bottom of the Home Page for more information.

Though Kirkland’s offers consumers the option to receive a free tip-over restraint kit (also known as furniture anchors), which can be used to attach the dresser to a wall, along with a one-time free in-home installation, CR recommends against this option. Tip-over restraints are a less reliable recall remedy than returning the dresser because there is no way to ensure that consumers will take the extra step to install the anchors, CR believes.

To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go to the website.

Consumer Reports is an independent, nonprofit organization that works side by side with consumers to create a fairer, safer, and healthier world. CR does not endorse products or services, and does not accept advertising. Copyright © 2019, Consumer Reports, Inc.
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