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Fixed Stairs


October 2003
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2004-101
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Self-Inspection Checklist

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This checklist covers regulations issued by the U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) under the general industry standard 29 CFR 1910.24. It applies to interior and exterior stairs around machinery, tanks, and other equipment, and stairs leading to or from floors, platforms, or pits. It does not apply to stairs used for fire exit purposes. It also does not address fixed stairs associated with construction sites. Consult the OSHA regulations 29 CFR 1926.1051 and 1926.1052 for construction site requirements. The regulations cited apply only to private employers and their employees, unless adopted by a State agency and applied to other groups such as public employees.

  1. Are fixed stairs (rather than ladders or other means of access) provided where access to elevation is necessary on a daily or regular basis? [29 CFR 1910.24(b)]
  2. Do fixed stairs have a minimum width of 22 inches? [29 CFR 1910.24(d)] (see Figure) stairs
  3. Are fixed stairs installed at angles to the horizontal between 30o and 50o? [29 CFR 1910.24(e)] (see previous Figure)
  4. Are all treads reasonably slip-resistant with the front protruding edge of the tread of a nonslip finish? [29 CFR 1910.24(f)]
  5. Do fixed stairs have a uniform rise height and tread width throughout the flight of stairs? [29 CFR 1910.24(f)]
  6. Are stairway landing platforms no less than the width of the stairway and a minimum of 30 inches long measured in the direction of travel? [29 CFR 1910.24(g)]
  7. Are standard railings provided on all open sides of exposed stairways and stair platforms? [29 CFR 1910.24(h)] (see checklist Guarding Floors, Stairs, and Other Openings)
  8. Is a vertical clearance above the stair tread to an overhead obstruction that is at least 7 feet measured from the leading edge of the tread? [29 CFR 1910.24(i)]