The parents of a toddler crushed to death by a falling IKEA dresser are set to sue the company, just under a year since the furniture giant paid out $50m (£38m) to the families of three children in the US who suffered similar fates.
A lawyer for the family of 2-year-old Jozef Dudek told the Philadelphia Inquirer that the boy died under the fallen dresser after he had been put down for a nap. "Jozef's tragic death was completely avoidable," attorney Daniel Mann said, before accusing IKEA of not publicising the recall enough.
The international store recalled several dresser models in the US and Canada over tipping worries, while offering UK customers a free kit to anchor the units to the wall.
"IKEA chests of drawers are safe when anchored to the wall per the assembly instruction, using the tip over restraint provided with the product," said a spokesperson for the company said at the time. "Accidents related to furniture tipping over is a serious home safety issue for the entire home furnishing industry and IKEA is committed to take the lead in addressing this challenge."
Jozef Dudek is the eighth child known to have been killed by a falling IKEA dresser, the Inquirer reported. The company have told people to immediately stop using recalled units that are not anchored to the wall.
Donna Moore, Country Customer Relations Manager, IKEA UK and Ireland, said in a statement provided to IBTimes UK: "We are deeply saddened to learn of a tragic tip-over accident which reportedly took place in May in California.
"At IKEA, we believe children are the most important people in the world and the safety of our products is our highest priority. IKEA chests of drawers are safe when anchored to the wall, as per the assembly instructions using the tip over restraint provided with the product... We urge all customers to check their chests of drawers are securely anchored to the wall."
The affected dressers come from IKEA's MALM range and a number of others. "The recall affects children's chests and dressers taller than 23.5 inches and adult chests and dressers taller than 29.5 inches that do not meet the performance requirements of the U.S. voluntary industry standard," the company said during the recall.
The December 2016 $50m payout was divided between the families of Camden Ellis, Curren Collas and Ted McGee, all 2-years-old and who all died under falling IKEA units. The company also agreed to donate $50,000 to three hospitals as part of the settlement.