Dealing with a child at home is always a daunting task, especially when you have an indoor balcony that they can access. When making the home safe, it’s important to consider all potential spots where a child can get into danger.
This is why parents need to make sure the internal mezzanine or banister is child proofed.
What you may not be aware of, is that more than 7000 children died in 2019 because of unintentional injuries, which include falls according to a report by Center for Disease Control and Prevention. In spite of being highly avoidable, accidental pediatric falls are the primary cause of injury in children aged 0 to 4 as trauma registry data from the pediatric trauma system in Georgia shows.
Since children are at a higher risk of injury than adults, use the following ideas to keep their indoor space safe.
- Safety net
- Rails with narrow gap
- Avoid horizontal railings
- Railing height
- Anti-grabbity strip
Related: How to Baby Proof Apartment Balcony
1. Safety net
As a parent, you’ve probably encountered a situation when your heart rate rose significantly while on vacation or visiting friends on a balcony.
Perhaps this occurred over the weekend when you were craving a much-deserved break and decided to take your family out for some leisure time.
Children are naturally curious with indoor balconies, and hanging out on one with other people while enjoying the warm weather can be a lot of fun.
The problem is that people have been known to fall from balconies, which is everyone’s worst fear.
Anguish is something no one likes to see.
Your youngster should be free to move about safely and securely.
For the protection of both children and adults who visit their internal balconies, homeowners should definitely consider installing a safety net as an atrium, mezzanine or banister guard.
Its mesh is composed of a thicker, fire-resistant, higher-quality fabric, making it more durable than other nets that are often made of weak plastic.
It also allows complete visibility through the net while blending flawlessly with your interior style.
Both the interior and outdoor versions are weather resistant.
A rail net can be connected to your interior balcony, deck, or stair banister using cable ties that can be threaded through the net’s designated holes and simply removed when needed.
A child’s climbing prowess may be very impressive, especially as they learn to walk and grow more adventurous.
There should be no way for your youngsters to gain leverage on the horizontal rails of your internal balcony.
Placing a shield made of plexiglass over the rails is the most effective course of action to take.
In order to prevent your youngster from having something to hold onto, you should mount it on the inside of the railing rather than the outside.
There’s a good chance that you’ve already used one on the stairs in your house at some point.
In terms of setup, these couldn’t be easier!
As a great product for a baby-proof indoor balcony, they are equipped with tie straps or other mechanisms for securing them onto railings.
Having something like this installed means that your interior balcony view will not be obstructed at all.
Online buyers have access to a wide range of options that may be tailored to their own needs and budgets.
3. Rails with narrow gap
On the majority of the balconies, either the grill or the railings have a significant space between each vertical railing.
If your youngster is thin as they mostly are, there is a chance that he or she might slip through the guardrail.
There is a solution available in the event that you do not like to modify the appearance of the rails by installing plexiglass or netting in their place.
Also read: How to Block Balcony Gaps: 8 Ideas
In place of railings with a large space between them, you should utilize railings with a very narrow gap between each cable or grill.
These railings may be acquired online or from your local hardware store, and they should be installed with the aid of a competent professional.
4. Avoid horizontal railings
Railings that run horizontally can be seen on the balconies of a great number of luxury apartments in high-rise buildings.
The primary advantage of using horizontal railings rather than vertical ones is that the design is one that is more pleasant to the eye.
However, there are two distinct dangers that are associated with using horizontal railings.
Children of a young age have a limited awareness of the risks associated with falling from a height, and the brain of a toddler is more open to trying new things.
Because of this, you need to exercise extreme caution to ensure that you have enough protection.
A youngster has the potential to slip or get trapped in the space between horizontal railings, which is the first drawback of these types of railings.
Because there is not enough horizontal limitation imposed along the length of the rails, this can be catastrophic.
Another major safety concern is that horizontal grills or cables are perfect for support when they want to climb the balcony.
The risk will still be there even if your child cannot fit or squeeze in between.
Therefore, rather than using horizontal railings, it is a much better idea to consider vertical railings with a smaller spacing between each of them.
5. Ensure the proper height of the railing
What good does it do to install the railings on your banister and indoor balcony if a youngster of that age can simply climb over them?
In order to be compliant with the International Residence Code (IRC) stipulations, the height of balcony railings in residential structures must have a minimum height of 91 centimeters (36 inches).
For safety reasons, this height limit should be adhered to at all times especially because children of five years and below are still shorter than 36 feet.
Related: Child Safety Balcony Railings Guide
It will be impossible for toddlers and other youngsters of a similar age to scale to the top of the rails if this step is taken.
6. Anti grabbity strip
Anti-gravity strips are characterized by having a prickly surface constructed from flat plastic.
To ensure a secure attachment, these strips may be glued or tied onto the top of a railing.
Either method works well.
They do not significantly affect the look of the railing because of the fact that they are transparent, and thus preserve the appearance and integrity of the overall design.
Since the antigravity strips have a prickly surface that is designed to feel uncomfortable and painful, your child will be discouraged to touch the support of the top of the railing during their playtime.
What this means for you is that you’ll be able to put a halt to their attempt to climb over the railing of the balcony at any time.
Always be on your guard!
Being a watchful parent is the most effective method of ensuring your child’s safety when they are playing on the deck or balcony.
Your youngster may have a very difficult time climbing over the indoor balcony because of the improvements that have been made to the structure and the safety mechanisms of the balcony.
It is nonetheless your responsibility to take the necessary steps and efforts to ensure that your kid does not have a lot of opportunities to experiment or explore.
In the event that you go to someone else’s house or rent a hotel room, you need to exercise an increased level of caution as well, because you may not have the luxury of safety features that you have in your house.