Sheffield Occupational Health and Safety Association :: View topic - Handrails on Steps

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T.Stubbs
Executive Committee
Executive Committee


Joined: Apr 08, 2008
Posts: 192
Location: Chesterfield, Derbyshire
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 1:24 pm Reply with quote Back to top
Hi, As I understand it handrails are required on steps/stairs in a workplace. Our company has recently moved into a building where there are 3/4 steps up to various landings with no handrail, and we cannot fix them to the walls (legitimate reasons for this).

Can anyone make any suggestions on how we can resolve the issue bearing in mind that the steps are fairly narrow (old building)?

Any help would be appreciated.

Tracey  
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B.Tranmer
Executive Committee
Executive Committee


Joined: May 15, 2008
Posts: 32
Location: South Yorkshire
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:10 pm Reply with quote Back to top
Tracey,
There may not be a legal requirement for a handrail on steps as the working at height regs only apply to staircases! The argument would be whether the 3/4 steps constitute a staircase or not. There is case law (Coates v Jaguar Cars) to argue that this may not be the case, but a simple risk assessment would determine if there is a significant slip/trip or fall hazard over the existing hazard of commuting between heights. If you cannot fix a handrail to the wall could you rule this as not reasonably practicable?
You may find this article interesting.
http://www.thompsons.law.co.uk/ltext/health-safety-spring-2010-perils-stairwell.htm
Thanks, Ben
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Alcontrol Laboratories | Rotherham
 
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T.Stubbs
Executive Committee
Executive Committee


Joined: Apr 08, 2008
Posts: 192
Location: Chesterfield, Derbyshire
PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 12:05 pm Reply with quote Back to top
Thanks for the information Ben.

I must admit the steps are quite steep but I have also managed to put antislip tape on the nosing which should also help.

Tracey  
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