Bunk Bed Safety For Children
Bunk beds are fun beds for children and they are also great ways to save space in a room. However, if not assembled properly a bunk bed can be dangerous and lead to unfortunate accidents, including falling off the top bunk and being injured by guardrails. It’s not difficult to keep children safe in these beds. It’s simply a matter of making sure you build it properly and use the right bedding.
There are three main aspects of bunk bed safety for children that you need to consider:
- Guardrail Spacing – One of the main common threats to a child’s safety is the guardrails on the bed. The reason is that if they are not installed properly there is plenty of opportunity for injury. For instance, if they are placed too low, there is a risk that a kid can roll right over and off the top bunk and fall to the floor when sleeping. Also, if the space between the rail and the bunk are too wide, it is possible that the head of the child can become lodged between them, which can, in very extreme cases, lead to suffocation. Thus, make sure there is a rail on all four sides of the bed and that the gap that exists between the bottom of the guard rail and bed frame is not more than 3.5 inches. Moreover, the bed rail should be a minimum of 5 inches higher than the surface of the mattress to prevent children from falling.
- Support for Upper Bunk – If there isn’t enough support for the top bunk it can fall down and lead to injuries. Therefore, it is imperative that the supports that hold up the frame, mattress and the child are strong enough to do so. It helps to include cross ties underneath the mattress foundation for more security, as well as additional slats.
- Size of Mattress – It is essential that the mattress you obtain for the beds are the correct size. A wrong sized mattress can lead to falls and increase the space between the frame and the safety rails. As a general rule of thumb, the mattress should fit tightly against all four sides of the bed frame.
A few other useful safety tips for bunk beds that you may want to consider include:
- Make sure the ladder is secured to the bunks and replace any broken rungs immediately.
- Bunk beds should be inspected on a regular basis to make sure they are sturdy and so any broken parts can be fixed.
- Children under the age of 6 should not sleep in the upper bunk or be up there unsupervised.
- Kids should be taught the importance of always using the ladder to get to the upper bunk and not use chair or other furniture.
- Provide children with a nightlight so they can see when they climb up and down during the night.
Finally, keep in mind, to avoid any of these unfortunate occurrences, make sure you obtain a product that passes the US Safety Inspection, as this will help to increase bunk bed safety for children and guarantee quality.