Keeping decks and balconies safe

People die or are seriously injured every year when:

  • they fall from decks, balconies and windows
  • decks or balconies collapse.

Many of these deaths and injuries could be prevented. Learn how to keep your decks and balconies as safe as possible.

General deck and balcony safety

  • Don’t install heavy objects such as spas on a deck or balcony, unless the structure has been designed to withstand this extra load.
  • Avoid excessive jumping, dancing or other movement on a deck or balcony, unless the deck or balcony has been designed to withstand this extra load.
  • Remember that with age, decks and balconies deteriorate, reducing their ability to withstand the loads they were originally designed for.
  • Avoid having large numbers of people gather on a deck or balcony, unless it has been specifically designed to withstand this load.
  • Never climb over a balustrade, and never climb from one balcony to another, especially in multi-storey or high-rise buildings.
  • Never sit on top of a balustrade.

Children on decks and balconies

Keep kids safe around decks and balconies. Besides always supervising children, you can make your home safer by making a few simple changes:

  • Don’t leave anything climbable on or near the balustrades that kids can grip to help them climb. Keep all outdoor furniture and other climbable objects well away.
  • Ensure furniture and other climbable objects are difficult to move (e.g. use heavy furniture).
  • Install high locks or latches and self-closing devices to doors leading to decks or balconies.
  • Don’t leave furniture or other climbable objects near windows.
  • Don’t rely on fly screens or non-safety-grade glass to protect window openings.

For more detail, read our deck, balcony and window safety guideline (PDF, 1.7MB).