A balcony or deck adds outdoor living space to your home; however, it can also be dangerous to young children. Not only can little ones possibly fall from an unsecured balcony, but they can also get stuck between the vertical balusters that support the railing. Although nothing replaces adult supervision to keep kids safe, designing the railings with safety in mind and using materials like custom glass can provide more peace of mind and prevent injuries.
How to Make Your Balconies Safer for Kids
1. Reduce Space Between Railings
To ensure safety, and to keep kids from getting caught between the vertical rails, the railings should be spaced no more than four inches apart. The closer together they are, the better. The railing itself should also be at least four feet high to discourage climbing and to prevent falls.
2. Consider Custom Glass
Although the idea of a glass balcony railing might give parents pause, it’s actually one of the safest options for preventing accidents. With a custom glass railing, similar to those used in public areas like shopping malls or cruise ships, you can keep your children safe from falls or getting stuck without sacrificing your view.
Unlike using netting or fencing between the balusters, which can be unsightly and still entrap children, a glass balcony is attractive and doesn't allow anyone to pass through. Since custom glass balconies are made from safe tempered glass that isn't easily damaged, they are a safe option even for homes with children.
3. Avoid Unsafe Design
Even when you have deck or balcony railings, the design and decor of the space can increase risk. For instance, you might consider designing a deck railing with a built-in bench for extra seating. However, children can easily climb on benches and over railings.
Using horizontal supports is another popular design option, but they can serve as a ladder for children, putting them in danger. As you design and decorate your outdoor space, keep safety in mind and avoid any deck railing configuration that makes it easy for children to climb over or through the railing.
If you’re thinking about custom glass railings for your balcony, porch, or patio, contact Monsey Glass in Spring Valley, NY. For more than 50 years, they have served customers throughout New York’s Rockland, Orange, and Westchester counties, as well as New York City. They offer all types of glass services, including custom mirrors, bathtub enclosures, and storefront windows. To request an estimate, call (845) 352-2200. Visit them online to learn more about their offerings.