The death of a three-year-old Invercargill boy who was killed when a television fell on top of him should serve as a reminder to all parents to make sure heavy household objects are secured, a coroner says.
The young boy died on the morning of July 14 after he climbed up a set of drawers to turn the television on, coroner Christopher Devonport said in his findings released today.
Tragically, the television and the duchess it was sitting on tumbled on to the toddler.
He was rushed to Invercargill Hospital where a team of seven emergency staff spent 90 minutes trying to resuscitate him, but it was decided that his injuries were too severe to survive.
The boy, who cannot be named at the family's request, died from a "massive head injury," Devonport ruled.
It started off just like any other morning. The youngster and his sister woke early, and their father, who was dozing in his room, could hear them laughing.
They came in and asked him for a drink of water, and later, at 6.30am they asked their mother for breakfast, but she told them it was too early.
The parents dozed off again and at 9.30am they awoke to the sound of a loud thud.
The boy's father said the 32 inch television and the set of drawers fell "like they had come down glued together".
The TV was lying screen down and the duchess was also lying face down. The little boy was crushed underneath.
The boy's brother, who was in the room at the time, later told his mother that his brother died because he was trying to turn the television on.
"He used the word shaking but demonstrated to me later how [my son] was holding onto the front of the cabinet on the top somewhere and moving his body backwards and forwards."
She described her son as a "healthy, smiley child" with a curious streak.
"He was a climber. He was forever opening his sister's drawer and climbing up on her duchess and turning on the light in their bedroom."
His father described him as a "cheeky and mischievous wee chap and if he thought something was a good idea he would just do it".
Devonport said that the toddler's death was a terribly tragedy which happened to an adventurous three-year-old "who at such an age did not consider the possibility of, or consequences of, the chest of drawers he was climbing and the television he was trying to access toppling over and fatally injuring him.
"We live in 'shaky isles' and the wisdom in securing objects that may topple over and cause injury if dislodged has been recently highlighted by the Christchurch earthquakes," he said.
"The situation that befell [the toddler] highlights that securing objects that may topple over and cause injury if dislodged is especially important to protect young and vulnerable children from serious injury."
- © Fairfax NZ News
How important is NZ's anti-nuclear policy to you?Related story: It's all good, just don't mention the nukes
Will Yahoo ruin Tumblr?
Once Upon A Time distractions
The vanilla Budget
A day of building in time-lapse video
The power of three
What a difference a day makes
What have you got planned?
I read your songs
My favourite literary couples
The groom's perspective of weddings