There are two different types of safety gates available. Make sure you buy the gate most suitable for your needs.
About safety gates
Most safety gates are safe and work well to deter children from accessing potentially dangerous places. There are two types of safety gates: pressure mounted and hardware wall mounted.
These are easy to set up and take down. The gate is tightened between two solid wall surfaces. These work well in doorways where there is solid wood construction, but they cannot withstand as much pressure as hardware, wall mounted gates.
Hardware wall mounted
These attach with screws directly into a solid wall or wood post and are useful to block off high-risk areas such as stairs, fireplaces and kitchens. They are often made from wood, plastic, metal or mesh.
Some hardware wall mounted gates can form angles to cover odd shaped areas like hot tubs and fireplaces.
Risks and injuries
Children’s arms, legs and heads can become trapped in the spaces between the bars.
- Consider whether you may need the convenience and safety of being able to open the gate with one hand.
- Choose a hardware wall mounted gate if you need to block off high risk areas like stairs - pressure mounted gates are not secure enough.
- Check that spaces between the bars are between 50 mm and 95 mm to avoid trapping a child's head.
- Do not buy older crisscross diamond-shaped accordion gates. These can trap children's heads and clothing.
- Avoid purchasing gates that have a fixed horizontal bar at the bottom, these can become a tripping hazard when opened.
- Pet gates are not a suitable substitute for child safety gates, as they are not secure enough or designed for infants or toddlers.
- Make sure safety gates are securely attached, with suitable gaps between the bars.