General Specifications for Stairs and Ladders

Theodore G. Ohl


The configuration of structures leading from one level to another on stage is highly design dependent. However, several safety considerations should be noted and, as much as possible, observed in the construction of step units and ladders.

The general workable incline range for covered step units is 20° to 50°, with the most comfortable incline about 30° to 35°, or a 7″ to 9″ riser with a 9″ to 12″ tread. Changes in riser height or tread width within a set of stairs should be avoided. If the risers or treads must vary, the difference should be less than ½″. If it is impossible to meet this criterion, a landing may be incorporated to provide a break between two sets of stairs ...

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