Choosing the Right Railing When You Have Young Children and Toddlers

Beyond the aesthetic and modern materials, both interior and exterior railings are made for a specific purpose: to help steady the hand and protect the homeowner from falls. But to children and toddlers, the world is a playground just waiting to be explored. Everyone has seen a child playing on a railing before dreading the thought of them slipping through and hurting themselves. So, when deciding on the types of railings for your home, what kind do you choose? Fortunately, there are standards in place to help protect your children and design choices which can help even more.

Important Laws

According to International Residential Code (IRC) for railings, there are set standards for both indoor and outdoor railings to help keep children safe at home. Firstly, handrails must be 34 to 38 inches high to enable usability, and guardrails must be at least 36 inches high on open-sided surfaces; this means that for younger kids and toddlers, the rail will always be high enough by itself to keep them safe from falling. For kids that might like to put their heads through railings, IRC establishes that interior sections of guardrails “cannot possess any openings large enough to pass through a 4-inch diameter sphere”.

Railing Designs to Keep Kids Safe

Unfortunately for the sanity of parents, kids like to climb and get into places they shouldn’t. If you’re considering renovating your home, there are railing and guardrail designs that can at least dissuade children and toddlers from climbing. For a more modern style, thin vertical bars with no handholds can help keep children down from ambling over the top; horizontal bars, for example, will act as a ladder for inquisitive climbers. For more traditional styles of railing, vertical swirls may present a danger for kids, but flairs and accents can also present good handholds.

It’s a good idea to keep all members of your family in mind when purchasing new railing for your home. If you’re looking for the best interior and exterior railings, gates, and fences in the industry, look to the professions of Cacciola Iron Works. Call us for more information today!

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