Hall and Stairway Safety: Part II

Picking up where we left off yesterday, here is the remainder of my hall and stairway checklist. Look it over (and don’t forget to check out Part I) to make sure you know all the “do’s and don’ts” of these potentially dangerous, high-traffic areas.

5. Keep stairs free of all objects.

6. Never put floor wax or polish on stairs; if you do, you’ll own one dangerous Slip N’ Slide.

7. As cool as spiral staircases and steps with open risers may look, they are not very easy to negotiate. Think twice before acquiring this type of stairway. If you do have either of these kinds of stairs and you have small children, do not allow them unsupervised access.

8. Balconies or upper levels with railings are no place for an unsupervised child. If a child will be present in an area of your home with a railing in place to prevent falls, make sure the rails are too close for your child to squeeze their body through or cause entrapment of a body part. If the rails are too far apart, add additional rails or cover the openings.

9. Cover, remove, or replace any hard, sharp, or otherwise risky edges or protrusions on stair rails and banisters.

10. A safe stairway has at least one handrail positioned at a comfortable level for adults (about 32 inches). If children too small to use the adult hand rail safely will also be climbing the stairs, a second railing should be installed below the first at an appropriate height.

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