Bunk Bed Safety – Safety Considerations for Bunk Beds

Bunk Bed Safety

bunk bed safety

Bunk Bed Safety

Bunk Beds are such a cool addition to kids rooms or dorm rooms. Many people are concerned about the safety of these beds but often, the injuries can be prevented with the proper use and construction of the bunk bed. Here is a list of things that should be considered to ensure the safe use of any bunk bed.

  1.  Always buy a well constructed bed from a reputable manufacturer that meets the safety standards of the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Most beds made after July 2000 must meet these standards.
  2. Guardrails should run the entire length on both sides of the upper bunk with the exception of no more than a 15” opening for the ladder entrance. Guardrails should extend 5” above the mattress surface.
  3. Mattresses should fit snugly with not more than 1” between the mattress and bed frame.   Manufacturers recommend the mattress size and it should be adhered to. Some bunk beds are extra long and a standard size mattress may leave too much space at the ends.
  4. Slats under the mattress should be strong.
  5. All edges should be smooth.
  6. Shake the bed to test stability. If it wobbles, something needs tightened or it probably isn’t safe.
  7. The ladder should be easy to climb and secure.  Usually the ladder provided by the manufacturer is the best. Discourage children from finding other ways to reach the top.
  8. When sitting on the bottom bunk, your head should not touch the top bunk.
  9. Be very careful if assembly is required on your part. Follow the directions to be sure the bed is installed properly.
  10. Check all bolts and screws over time to be sure the bed hasn’t loosened with use.
  11. Some beds are made just for children and have lower weight limits. Some are made to withstand adult weights. Make sure you know how much weight the bed will hold when you are determining the needs for that bed over time.
  12. Finials are decorative ornaments at the end of posts. Avoid these when shopping for a bunk bed as well as anything else that could catch clothing or produce a sharp edge. . The simpler the design, the better for safety. If they are already on the bed, they can be removed and holes can be filled so no fingers get lodged in a hole.
  13. Position the bed away from ceiling fans, light fixtures. Keep the room tidy and free of sharp objects in case of a fall.
  14. Teach your children that beds are for sleeping, not playing. The bunk bed is not a toy. Generally speaking, it is safer to limit the top bunk to one child at a time. No hanging from the top or jumping on the bed should be the rule. All these can be dangerous or can make the bed become dangerous over time.
  15. Bunk beds are not for young children. Recommendations are for 6 and up on the top bunk. The reality is, the parent must know the maturity level of the child. Some children may not have the maturity even after 6. Some may never be suited for a bunk bed. Know your child and discern.

With all these considerations, are bunk beds a good choice? You bet!  Use them properly and buy good ones.  Be informed and read everything you can about their safety.  If you do this, they can be just as safe as a regular bed.

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