Of the two balcony guardrails pictured in the Sept. 17 Real Estate Section, the one Teo Van Runkle is posing on appears more penetrable and less safe.
If his mother is a licensed architect, she knows that the Uniform Building Code, the code adopted by most communities in this area, has a "6-inch sphere test" for guardrails.
According to this code, all guardrails are to be designed so that a 6-inch diameter sphere cannot pass through them. The rationale behind this test is that a guardrail (which, incidentally, must be 42 inches high), which precludes a 6-inch sphere, will also preclude the head, shoulders and body of a toddler such as Teo.
I can't put a tape measure to Teo's mom's guardrail, but by comparing it to Charlotte and Chester Owens' on the same page, I surmise that the Matthews-Van Runkle railing does not meet code, even with the extra horizontal rail.