Deck and balcony safety | Department of Housing and Public Works

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Skip Navigation LinksDepartment of Housing and Public Works > Construction > Building and plumbing > Decks and balconies > Deck and balcony safety

 Deck and balcony safety

People die or are seriously injured every year by falling from decks, balconies and windows—or in some cases when decks or balconies collapse.

Many of these deaths and injuries could have been prevented. Learn how to make your home 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.

Child safety 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.


Last updated 08 October 2015    


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