Bunk beds

Children can get caught in gaps in bed ends, risking suffocation or other serious injury .

Use a safe model

Only buy a bunk bed that complies with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS 4220). By law, all new bunk beds sold in Australia must meet this standard. Ask the retailer if you’re not sure.

Age does matter

Although bunk beds are a safety risk for any age, only children over the age of 9 years should use the top bunk. Make sure younger children only sleep on the bottom bunk.

Avoid gaps

There should be no gaps between 95 mm and 230 mm anywhere in the vicinity of the top bunk, as children can trap their head.

Check there are no unsafe gaps:

  • in the guardrails
  • between the wall and the bunk bed.

Guard against injury

Guardrails are important to keep your child safe in the top bunk.

Make sure the top of the guardrail:

  • is at least 160mm above the top of the mattress
  • extends around all four sides on the bunk bed.

You also need a guardrail on the wall-side of a bunk bed unless the bed is permanently attached to the wall.

Secure the ladder

Make sure any screws or fasteners are secure and tight.

If you have a detachable ladder, make sure you securely reattach it before your child climbs to the top bunk. Never remove the ladder while your child is in the top bunk.

Keep space overhead

Try and keep a distance of at least 2m between the top bunk and the ceiling fan.

Don't play on them

Be sure your children realise their bunk bed isn’t a substitute for a trampoline! Children should never jump or play on a bunk bed, especially the top bunk.

Updated: 25 Jul 2022

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