Long crossover walkway and stairs

How a Catwalk Can Improve Workflow in Your Facility

In a factory setting, the equipment can be difficult to access, leading to dangerous and/or uncomfortable working conditions. Catwalks can be a necessary solution to this problem and OSHA compliance.

What is a catwalk

A catwalk, sometimes called a runway, is an elevated platform or walkway used for observation or to give workers access to hard-to-reach areas within a facility to service equipment, tanks, hoppers, silos, sortation systems, and industrial processing equipment.

Upside Innovations is a stair manufacturer, and this article covers some applications and summarizes OSHA compliance requirements.


Common Catwalk Applications

  • HVAC & generator maintenance platforms
  • Accessing and clearing conveyor belts and sortation systems
  • An observation platform overseeing work areas
  • Rooftops – Air handlers, HVAC equipment, and generators
  • To crossover assembly lines and conveyor belts
  • Tank farm access

Upside Innovation’s Catwalks

Upside manufacturers prefabricated, easy-to-assemble OSHA complaint catwalk platforms.

Upside’s catwalk platform doesn’t just elevate people–it saves money and time. The industrial-grade aluminum components can be bolted together in an endless amount of configurations, making it ready to install upon arrival. With our APEX catwalk system, you’ll reduce costs while also saving time that would otherwise be spent welding the walkway together. If pre-assembled catwalks are not possible for your application, don’t worry! Our team of engineers and designers can customize a solution for any need.

At Upside, we believe that every business is unique and thus requires a different catwalk solution. That’s why we take the time to listen to your specific needs and requirements before craftily designing a plan specifically for you. Our team of experts creates structural drawings of where your catwalk has to be installed, making sure to include all details regarding positioning, elevation, etc., in alignment with your stated business goals. This level of planning and customization helps ensure that you get exactly the right catwalk for YOUR business.

Furthermore, we evaluate how much weight your catwalk can hold. The construction of your catwalk is entirely dependent on its planned use. Therefore, we need to know the load-bearing capacity requirements to design and build a safe walkway for your employees.

Our aluminum catwalks are easy to install in difficult-to-reach spaces and follow OSHA standards so that your workers can safely access elevated areas.

ramp and stair expert

Call (513) 889-2492

Steps and APEX Trailer Catwalk at Industrial Facility
These Steps and long APEX Trailer Catwalk Platform were installed at an Industrial Facility.

OSHA catwalk requirements

OSHA compliance stairs platforms

OSHA establishes rules and regulations to follow for equipment operators and maintenance personnel who work on catwalks, which include the minimum width dimensions, minimum load requirements, fall protection requirements, and catwalk opening requirements. Understanding these standards can help create a safe working environment.

The safety requirements for catwalks, or elevated walkways, are located in Section 1910 Subpart D of the OSHA standards. A catwalk is an elevated surface used as a pathway between buildings or along shafting. It’s also considered a type of work platform. employers need to make sure that catwalks are constantly kept safe and up to code.

OSHA Section 1910.22 dictates the primary conditions for walking-working surfaces, encompassing catwalks. To be compliant, employers must guarantee that all walking surfaces are safe from slip and fall hazards, as well as being structurally stable and sound. With that in mind, here are some key standards for workplaces with elevated working conditions:

  • Walking/working surfaces are kept in a clean, orderly, and sanitary condition. (1910.22(a)(1))
  • Free of hazards such as sharp or protruding objects, loose boards, corrosion, leaks, spills, snow, and ice. (1910.22(a)(3))
  • Walking-working surface can support the maximum intended load for that surface. (1910.22(b))
  • Employees must have safe means of access and egress to and from walking-working surfaces. (1910.22(c))
  • Walking-working surfaces are inspected regularly to ensure safe conditions (1910.22(d)(1))

Catwalk width requirements

A catwalk or runway must be at least 18 inches wide (Section 1910.28(b)(5)(ii)(A)). When a stairway accesses the catwalk, catwalk width depends on the width of the stairway and stairway landing that serves it. Under OSHA Section 1910.25(b)(4) a stairway landing must be at least the width of the stairway, which has a minimum width of 22″, so catwalks served by a stairway must have a minimum width of 22″ for OSHA compliance.

How wide does a catwalk need to be?

A catwalk or runway must be at least 18 inches wide (OSHA Section 1910.28(b)(5)(ii)(A))

Similarly, IBC-compliant stairs have a minimum width of 36″; therefore, catwalks should be minimum of 36″ wide. Some bigger catwalks might actually be classified as mezzanine structures and would, as a result, need to adhere to the IBC mezzanine egress requirements.

Catwalk load requirements

The maximum intended load is the total weight and force of all employees, equipment, vehicles, tools, materials, and other loads that an employer reasonably anticipates will be applied to a walking-working surface at any one time (section 1910.22(b) Loads)

For guardrail systems around a catwalk requires that handrails and the top rails are capable of withstanding, without failure, a force of at least 200 pounds (890 N) applied in any downward or outward direction within 2 inches (5 cm) of any point along the top edge of the rail. (section 1910.29(f)(7) Strength criteria)

Catwalk opening requirements

Catwalks may have floor holes within the walking surface or vertical openings near the edge of the walking surface. A fall protection system must protect these holes and openings to prevent employees from falling. (section 1910.28)

Hole – Opening or gap in the walking surface.

Examples include drains, large cracks, broken floorboards, chutes, and pits that are at least 2 inches.

OSHA section 1910.28(b)(7) states that where the inside bottom edge of the opening is less than 39 inches above the walking-working surface and the outside bottom edge of the opening is 4 feet or more above a lower level is protected from falling by the use of a guardrail system, safety net system, travel restraining system, or personal fall arrest system. 

Opening – Opening or gap in a wall, partition, or railing.

Examples include openings to access equipment, chute openings, and window openings that are at least 30 inches high and at least 18 inches wide.

OSHA requires that employers provide a means of fall protection around floor holes in a catwalk or other walking surfaces.

Takeaway

Install an industrial catwalk to make your work areas more efficient by providing employees with easy access to equipment and maintenance areas. Catwalks come in many designs, so it is important to consider all variables before purchasing.

Upside Innovation’s APEX catwalk solutions are prefabricated, meaning they are ready to install immediately. The industrial-grade aluminum components bolt together, amounting to never-ending configurations. Contact our qualified stair and platform experts to reduce costs and eliminate time-consuming welding with our APEX catwalk systems. How a Catwalk Can Improve Workflow in Your Factory

Rooftop Stairs – Non-Penetrating Roof Mounted Solutions

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

Roof-top equipment requires ongoing maintenance to keep work environments totally safe. Workers accessing roof-tops to maintain equipment frequently meet accessibility challenges and obstacles such as pipes, skylights, ducts, and parapets, not to mention abundant trip and fall hazards. For roof-top accessibility and the ability to safely crossover over obstacles over 12″ height, an OSHA-compliant fixed roof-top stair or work platform is required.

When adding crossover stair accessibility to roof-tops, a licensed Professional Engineer (P.E.) is required to ensure all conditions and contingencies are considered in the design. In addition to meeting International Building Code (IBC), OSHA, and any additional local compliance requirements, an engineer will ensure that structural considerations such as weight distribution, ongoing wear (e.g., wind displacement), and long-term maintenance will need to be factored in. Cutting corners to get the job done should never be considered. Not only can this be costly, but certified contractors and installers are always recommended. For example, a leak in a multi-story office building due to an improperly mounted stair unit and mechanical equipment will never be worth the perceived savings of getting the job done quickly by less capable installers.

Rooftop Crossover Stairs Hero Image

Most commercial roofs are Built-Up Roof Membrane (BUR) made of rubber and/or tar. All roof-top stair installations should use non-penetrating mounting solutions to be effective. Roof curbs and equipment rails (see below for more info) are installed when the roof is created or redone. Both are raised structural elements located under the roof membrane. If your roof-top project requires these solutions, it can be costly and time-consuming to add them. For lighter equipment, such as stairs, a less expensive base plate is all that is needed to be safe and effective.


Ideal for roof-top solutions

Because Upside’s rooftop access stairs are modular and made from lightweight, high-quality aluminum, no lift or crane is required for installation, and each component can be carried up to the roof. They are designed to meet your specifications, including code-compliancy.

ramp and stair expert

Call (513) 889-2492


Common non-penetrating base plate installation options

If a curb isn’t a possibility when mounting roof-top stairs, a metal base plate solution is an easy and cost-effective alternative. In standard non-penetrating installations, the stair is anchored with countersunk bolts to a flat metal plate. The flat plate is rigid enough to distribute the weight over a wide surface area to prevent damage from point load and leaks. A thick neoprene pad is glued between the metal base plate and the roof, protecting the roof from the abrasive metal. Often times the neoprene pad floats on the roof surface. Local codes may require the stair unit to be anchored to the roof.

  • Stair base plate on non-penetrating isolator pads helps mitigate leaks 
  • Flexible enough to be moved or adjusted. This includes leveling the roof-top stair.
  • Weight distribution–distribute the load (point load) over a bigger area to prevent the stair weight from creating depressions that create pooling or ponding of water. It also protects the unit from penetrating the roof surface or creating structural damage.
    • With styrofoam-insulated roofs, weight distribution is especially important.
    • When a roof heats up, it can become soft and create depressions.
  • Using neoprene pads or vibration isolator pads between the flat plate and roof surface prevents abrasion from movement or wind, causing wear through the roof membrane.
  • Base plates or mounts raise stairs out of standing water after rain/snow.
  • Base plates are easier and less expensive to install.
Vibration and Movement damage from non-penetrating support

Common reasons for rooftop stair, catwalk, or crossover installations

  • To be OSHA compliant, obstacles such as pipes, ducts, or walls over 12” that workers must cross over during ongoing maintenance, require a crossover stair.
  • A permanent roof-top stair or ladder is required to access the roof or crossover a parapet or wall.
  • Safe access to solar panels, roof-top units, and mechanical equipment 
  • Stair crossovers over skylights
  • Safe access to work platforms for HVAC maintenance
  • Filter changes and maintenance for air handlers and evaporator coils
  • Roof-top access for the maintenance of power vents and roof centrifugal exhaust system

What is a curb or equipment rail?

A roof-top curb is used to mount mechanical units (such as air conditioning or exhaust fans), stairs, stair crossovers or skylights on a roof. A curb used on commercial roofs is typically a raised structural element made from wood or concrete located under the roof membrane. Flashing and a cant strip are used to transition from the roof to the curb. Flashing is usually a thin piece of galvanized steel used where the roof plane meets a vertical surface, the curb in this instance. A cant strip creates a smooth transition from the roof deck to the curb.

Rooftop Curb or Rail – A structural element under the roof membrane that the unit is mounted to.

Because the curb is raised under the roof membrane, stairs and mechanical equipment can be anchored directly to the curb. Similar to curbs, equipment rails are a long structural galvanized steel unit designed to mount roof-top equipment, pipe roller supports, and duct pedestals, which also do not penetrate the roof and are anchored using treated wood.


Common Rooftop Stair Configurations


Rooftop Stair Compliance

In addition to OSHA and IBC compliances, occasionally, additional codes must be followed to meet local industry compliance standards. In these cases, an engineer experienced with roof-top installations must be consulted. Aside from worker safety and building codes, wind events and seismic activity often need to be factored in when designing safe and effective solutions as well.

OSHA

Workers maintaining roof-top equipment at heights of 6 feet or more require access to stair platforms or conventional fall protection such as guardrail systems, safety net systems, or personal fall arrest systems. §1926.501(b)(1)

OSHA requires a crossover stair for obstacles over 12″

IMC-2003 306.5 Equipment and appliances on roofs or elevated structures.

Summary of IBC codes for stairs 

  • A permanent stair access solution is required for equipment and appliances installed on a roof that exceeds 16’ in height.
  • Roof obstacles and obstructions over 30″ high require a permanent method of access, such as a crossover stair.
  • A roof with a slope of 33% slope or greater requires a permanent stair solution.
  • Permanent ladders and stairs installed to or on a roof shall comply with the following minimum design criteria:
    • Side railing shall extend above the parapet or roof edge at least 30”.
    • The space between the ladder rung should not exceed 18”.
    • Ladders must have at least 6” of toe space.
    • 18” minimum spacing between rails
    • Ladder rungs must be no less than 0.75” in diameter and capable of withstanding a load of 300 lbs.
    • Ladders over 30’ in height need a landing rate to withstand 100 lbs. per sq. ft.
    • Ladders must be corrosion-resistant.
  • Roof-top catwalks need to be as least 24” wide and require railings.

Considerations for severe winds and seismic activity

Roof-top stairs and equipment must be engineered and mounted to withstand forces of nature, such as high winds and seismic activity. Anchoring is required to secure the curb to the roof and the roof-top air-handling equipment or stairs to the curb. To meet certain local code compliances, a spring isolation system may be required. An engineer will need to evaluate your particular application and recommend the appropriate solution that meets the requirements of your project’s applicable building codes. Compliance verification and calculations can be provided and are performed by a licensed professional engineer for the seismic zone in which they are to be installed.

Stair Tread Depth vs. Stair Riser Height illustration

Safety with Every Step: Stair Tread Depth vs. Stair Riser Height

Rise and Run for Stairs

Following building codes specific to stairs is essential in any new construction or remodeling project to ensure safety for everyone. This article outlines stair code requirements to make it easy for builders to meet relevant regulations and safety standards.

Building Codes for Stair Tread Depth

The depth of a stair tread is the horizontal distance from the vertical planes of the foremost projection to adjacent stair treads, as seen from a 90-degree angle to the leading edge of a tread. It measures the available surface area for a person’s foot to rest when ascending or descending the stairway.

Stair Tread Depth vs. Stair Riser Height illustration
ComplianceStair DepthRiser Height
OSHA9.5″ (240 mm)
Minimum
9.5″ (240 mm)
Minimum
IBC11″ (279 mm)
Minimum
4″ (102 mm) – 7″ (178 mm)
Minimum – Maximum
IBC Occupancy Exceptions
Group R-2, R-3, and U
(see chart below)
10″ (254 mm)
Minimum
7-3/4″ (197 mm)
Maximum
Occupancy ClassificationGroup
Residential transient – occupancies containing sleeping units where the occupants are primarily transient. Structures like hotels, motels, and boarding housesR-1
Residential permanent – occupancies containing sleeping units or more than two dwelling units where the occupants are primarily permanentR-2
Residential group – occupancies where the occupants are primarily permanent and not classified as Group R-1, R-2R-3
Utility and Miscellaneous – General Buildings and structures of an accessory character and miscellaneous structures not classified in any specific occupancy shall be constructed, equipped, and maintained to conform to the requirements of this code commensurate with the fire and life hazard incidental to their occupancy.U

Standard Stair Tread Depth

The Industrial Building Code (IBC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have varying tread depth specifications for various stair types. In its 2017 revision to the required walking-working surfaces, OSHA added minimum tread depths. On the other hand, IBC has long mandated a minimum tread depth.

OSHA and IBC use research on stairways with varying tread and riser dimensions to determine the minimum tread depths and maximum riser heights.

According to OSHA, a standard stair refers to any fixed or permanent stairway aside from alternating tread stairs, ship stairs, or spiral stairs. Standard stairs must, at minimum, maintain a tread depth of 9.5 inches, or 24 cm, under OSHA 1910.25(c)(3).

IBC 1011.5.2, on the other hand, stipulates that stair treads must be at least 11 inches (27.94 cm) deep, measured horizontally between the vertical planes of the foremost projection of consecutive treads and perpendicular to the leading edge of the treads.

The minimum tread depth must be 10 inches in all group R-3 occupancies, all dwelling units in R-2 occupancies, and all group U occupancies supplementary to either group R-3 occupancies or individual dwelling units in R-2 occupancies. Most multi-family dwellings intended to get occupied permanently must adhere to the standard of a minimum tread depth of 10 inches (25.4 cm).


Building Codes for Stair Riser Height

The upright (vertical) or inclined element of a stair that gets positioned at the rear of a stair tread or platform and links near the front edge of the next higher tread, platform, or landing is referred to as the stair riser height.

Standard Stair Riser Height

Depending on the type of stairway, OSHA and IBC also have varying maximum stair riser height regulations.

ramp and stair expert

Call (513) 889-2492

Standard stairs must have a maximum riser height of 9.5 inches (24 cm) following OSHA 1910.25(c)(2). IBC 1011.5.2 stipulates that the minimum and maximum stair riser heights must be 4 inches (10.16 cm) and 7 inches (17.78 cm), respectively.

In groups R-3, R-2, and U auxiliary occupancies, the maximum riser height is 7-3/4 inches.

Conclusion

The purpose of building codes for metal stairs is to ensure the safety of everyone who uses them. Any safety risk will significantly decrease if all steps and stairs have the same tread depth and riser height parameters.

For more than 13 years, Upside Innovations has been creating modular metal stairs and platforms. When it comes to design and innovation for a variety of prefabricated metal stair kits as well as custom solutions, Upside Innovations is unmatched in the industry.

Billy & Eli Upside Innovations Podcast Poster

Upside Podcast – How to Prepare for a Successful Modular Stair & Ramp Installation

If there’s one thing we know for sure, things change fast in the modular construction industry. Last-minute design changes and a long list of variables over which we have very little control can impact the budget and timeline for your modular installation project, and our integrated Apex System was designed to make adapting on the fly easy and affordable.

In this episode of the Upside Podcast, Upside’s Billy Lippert and Eli Boyd discuss how the Apex System makes wheelchair ramp and metal stair installations straightforward and successful. Topics covered include project estimates, proper budgeting, leg anchors, stacked designs, installing surfaces, proper measuring techniques, anticipating common variables, assessing site conditions, ADA ramp heights, last-minute site changes, passing inspection, and making sure the material matches the specifications for your project. Modular industry challenges are common, but our Apex system ensures the product delivered is well matched to the final design.

Roof crossover stairs

Common Commercial and Industrial Metal Stair Configurations

Many companies require access to elevated areas at some point. For instance, potential hazards include servicing HVAC equipment, accessing a loading dock, or even a crossover. Many workplaces utilize scaffolding or ladders for these purposes. Yet these options are less efficient and can contribute to serious workplace accidents.

Commercial and industrial metal stairs have become the go-to for replacing ladders and scaffolding. Metal stairs are safer, more durable, increase worker productivity, and are easier to install. Upside Innovations is a leading manufacturer of OHSA, ADA, and IBC-compliant commercial and industrial metal stairs. We offer many configurations to meet the needs of any application.

Stair Towers

Upside Innovations offers fully customized stair towers to meet the needs of any application. Since no two applications are the same, our internal team of engineers will design a custom layout for your stair tower. Our team uses state-of-the-art tools to provide you with detailed drawings and a quote in a matter of minutes.

We design and build stair towers for any height and complexity. Our stair towers feature slip-resistant decking and are 100% aluminum, so they will not rust, warp, or rot. We ensure that all stair towers comply with ADA, IBC, OHSA, and local building codes. Our professional installation crew will ensure seamless delivery and installation. 

roof access stairs

Commercial Stairs

Upside Innovations manufactures and installs prefabricated commercial stairs that are always ADA or IBC-compliant. The aluminum stairs are solid and easy to maintain, and they offer slip-resistant decking, which can be designed to reach any height. Our engineering team develops a layout just for your project. Then, our professional installation team will install your commercial stairs in less than an hour.

commercial-stairs

Inplant Office/Mezzanine Stairs

Also known as “mezzanine stairs”, Upside Innovations offers two styles of OHSA-compliant multi-story inplant office stairs. The Adjustable OSHA Stairway is a flex-style industrial stair with two-line rails. The stairs are adjustable between 8.5’ and 10.5’. The adjustable stairs are a great choice if you are unsure of the exact height that you need or want something that can be moved if your warehouse expands.

The Fixed Industrial Stairway is a custom solution designed to meet the exact height you need to reach the multi-story inplant office. This configuration also offers many decking options – knurled, extruded decking material, or aggressive-tread grip strut decking.

OMNIStep Feature rendering

Inplant Office/Mezzanine Stairs FAQ

1. WHAT ARE MEZZANINE STAIRS?

Mezzanine stairs provide access to an intermediate floor that’s between levels of a warehouse or building.

2. HOW LONG WILL THE MEZZANINE STAIRS LAST?

It depends on whether the stairs are a permanent structure or not, natural elements such as salt water, how many people use them, etc. View our aluminum stair maintenance tips to maximise the lifespan of your mezzanine stairs.

3. CAN I LEASE THE MEZZANINE STAIRS?

We typically lease stairs for a minimum of 3 months. However, if we have the product in stock and can work within your timeline, we can most likely set up lease terms.

Generator Stairs

Upside Innovations manufactures OHSA-compliant aluminum generator access platform systems with stairs and railings. The stairs and platform feature a non-slip tread. We typically use a grip strut material which offers superior slip-resistance in all directions of travel. The aluminum construction offers superior strength, is low maintenance, and ensures a long product lifecycle. Upside’s generator stairs give employees safe and efficient access to generators to perform maintenance tasks.

Our engineering team can create custom layouts for any application—for instance, a platform for a single generator or a field of generators. We also provide optional installation for generator stairs to ensure that installation is done correctly the first time.

Rendering of an APEX generator access stairs

Loading Dock Stairs

Loading docks are one of industrial workplaces’ busiest and most hazardous locations. Most loading docks lack adequate safety warnings and measures to prevent workers from falling. Many utilize a fixed ladder at one end of the pier. Truck drivers and workers will often skip the ladder and jump onto the pavement when they are in a hurry.

Upside Innovations offers safe and efficient loading dock stairs. All our loading dock stairs are 100% OHSA compliant, helping drivers and workers to enter and exit the loading dock area safely. Our loading dock stairs are made of thick, structural aluminum channels for the step stringers and platform edges, offering unmatched strength and durability. The stairs and platform offer a slip-resistant tread and can typically be installed in less than an hour with no on-site welding and minimal bolts.

continuous-rail-dock-step-rendering1

Hillside Steps

Hillsides present challenging, inefficient, and dangerous terrains. Upside Innovations designs, manufacture, and installs aluminum hillside steps for any application. Since every hillside is different, our internal team of engineers will work to design the perfect layout for your project. Since aluminum is lighter than any other material, it is ideally suited for the challenges of hillside installation. Moreover, they will not rust, warp, or rot.

hillside-stairs-tk-render

Portable Stairs

Upside Innovations manufactures two types of OHSA-compliant portable stairs for mobile offices and construction trailers. Omni Steps offer robust aluminum construction with slip-resistant decking. In addition, the stairs are adjustable work platforms that are fully adjustable between the specified heights. For instance, the 21” – 26” portable stairs can be set to heights within that range.

Our Dual-Height Steps are partially adjustable. For instance, 28” – 35” portable stairs can be set to either 28” or 35” to meet the mobile office door threshold. You can also choose between knurled, extruded decking material or aggressive-tread grip strut decking for your deck. Both the Omni and Dual-Height portable stairs offer easy and quick assembly.

Portable-Stair-OMNI-Step-TK-Render

Semi-Trailer Steps

Most site trailers require portable semi-steps. Upside Innovations manufactures three different styles of semi-trailer steps for 48” tall trucks. These include standard trailer steps, trailer steps with a double top step, and a trailer step with a platform. All of our trailer steps feature extra-wide 4” steps, which enable two-way foot traffic. Lightweight aluminum construction allows stairs to move or lift into the trailer easily. In addition, our steps are OHSA compliant, offering handrails on both sides and a 3” grip strut channel for maximum stability.

semi-step-hero-tk-render

Crossover Stairs and Platforms

Upside Innovations offers incredibly versatile crossover stairs that can be used for a potentially unlimited number of applications. Crossover stairs make it easy and safe for workers to get over horizontal pipes, production lines, and other floor-level obstacles. Unfortunately, workers attempting to avoid these obstacles is a common cause of potentially serious injuries.

Our OHSA-compliant crossover stairs come in many different configuration options with single steps, single platforms, or a complete step and platform solution. The stairs are made of durable and low-maintenance aluminum and offer several different decking options, including extruded, grip strut, fiber grate, or bar grate decking. In addition, we provide professional installation to ensure that your crossover stairs are installed correctly.

Crossover Stair

Roof Access Stairs

Roof access for industrial buildings and warehouses has become increasingly important in recent years. Workers need access to HVAC systems, solar panels, elevators, and communication towers. Ladders and cages are hazardous and can contribute to serious or even fatal injuries. Roof access stairs are a far more efficient and safer method for workers.

Upside Innovations manufactures and installs OHSA or ADA-compliant custom exterior roof access stairs. Our stairs feature slip-resistant decking, including extruded, grip strut, or bar grating to accommodate different needs and environments. Since no two applications are the same, our internal engineering team will design the perfect layout for your roof access stairs, and our professional installation crew will ensure that they are correctly installed.

Upside Innovations has the perfect industrial and commercial metal stairs solution for any company. All of our stairs are manufactured in the U.S. using the highest quality components and involve a superior engineering process. Call us, and we’ll be happy to help you design the perfect set of stairs for your application.

roof access stairs
fall-safety

Avoiding Falls, Trips, and Slips in the Workplace

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), slips, trips, and falls inflict 700 fatal injuries and many more accidents in the workplace each year. While mishaps can occur in any setting, managers can avoid these workplace accidents by taking the necessary measures, detecting dangers, and training their personnel. Here are some workplace safety tips to help you avoid slips, trips, and falls:

Make Walkways and Work Areas Free of Obstructions

The best way to avoid slips, trips, and falls in the workplace is to make sure everyone on your team cleans up the places where they walk and work. Maintain a clutter-free workplace by encouraging staff to “clean as they go” and reminding them not to obstruct heavily used areas with garbage, cables, or equipment.

Preparing for Bad Weather Conditions

Weather can lead to a higher risk of workplace accidents such as slips and falls because water and ice can make paths slippery. Check to see if your business, firm, or building has measures in place to cope with bad weather in a safe manner.

  • In winter conditions, make sure to spread salt, especially in high-traffic areas such as the entry and parking areas.
  • In rainy and snowy circumstances, lay mats at the door and consider installing fans to prevent slick patches at the entry.

Most of us are aware that items like salt and doormats may help prevent slip, trip, and fall dangers, but not every company has someone whose job it is to ensure that these measures are followed. Assigning these activities to a single individual will guarantee that these tasks are completed when conditions are less risky.

Require Workers to Wear Appropriate Shoes

Adequate footwear may go far toward keeping employees safe in the workplace. Ensure your staff understands what kind of shoes are appropriate for your workplace. In general, shoes with soft rubber soles are preferable for reducing the risk of workplace falls. Encourage employees to wipe their shoes on a rug when coming in from wet, rainy, or snowy circumstances and keep their shoes clean to regain traction.

Recognize hazards and utilize warning signages to alert employees

Trip risks exist in any environment, no matter how skillfully or properly it has been built. Identifying trip risks and putting up prominent signages can assist in reducing the likelihood of slip, trip, and fall occurrences near metal stairs and ramp landings.

Curbs and paths with variations in height are two major workplace trip risks. Employers should educate workers to observe warnings when going past a danger by bright paint on the curb or signs that specify elevation changes.

Fall protection is everyone’s business in the workplace setting, and everyone needs to do their share to maintain the safety of the workplace environment. 

Industrial metal stairs

OSHA Regulations for Industrial Metal Stairs

OSHA regulates every factor about a workplace, and below you will find the code that we follow for our fixed, industrial stairs.

osha stairs labeled

Landings, Platforms & Catwalks

Platforms and catwalks can be placed at the top, middle, or bottom of a set of metal stairs.

  • Width:  Platforms must be at least the width of the stairs. (1910.25(b)(4))
  • Depth: Platforms must be at least 30 inches deep, as measured in the direction of travel. (1910.25(b)(4))
  • Door or gate present: The door or gate must open up onto a platform, and the swing of the door does not reduce the platform’s depth to 1) less than 20 inches for platforms installed before January 17, 2017 or 2) less than 22 inches for platforms installed on or after January 17, 2017. (1910.25(b)(5)(i) & 1910.25(b)(5)(ii))
OSHA compliance stairs platforms

Guardrails & Midrails

As an employer, there is a duty to have a fall-protection system in place when there is an unprotected edge that is 4 or more feet from a lower level; guardrails are the most common fall-protection system used for stairs.

  • Step Guardrail Height: Unlike ADA guidelines, the guardrails in OSHA steps also act as the handrails when the top edge of the guardrail is between 36 and 38 inches above the leading edge of the stair tread. (1910.29(f)(1)(iii)(A))
  • Platform Guardrail Height: The top edge of the top guardrail must be 42 inches, plus or minus 3 inches, above the walking surface, measured vertically from the step tread. (1910.29(b)(1))
  • Platform Midrail Height: A system must be put between the steps and the top guardrail to prevent an employee from falling through. Midrails are commonly used in conjunction with the top guard rail. The midrail must be installed at a height midway between the top edge of the guardrail and the walking surface. (1910.29(b)(2))

Step Treads

The step tread is the part of the stairs that you walk on. It can be made from a multitude of decking materials that offer various degrees of traction.

  • Tread depths must be the same between each landing platform. (1910.25(b)(3))
  • The minimum tread depth is 9.5 inches. (1910.25(c)(3))
  • The minimum tread width is 22 inches between the stringers. (1910.25(c)(4))

Risers

Risers make up the vertical area between step treads. Risers can be solid or open-back depending on the required compliance code. OSHA does not require solid risers, so most companies choose to have open-back risers because that style is typically less expensive.

  • Riser heights must be the same between each landing platform. (1910.25(b)(3))
  • The maximum riser height is 9.5 inches. (1910.25(c)(2))

Footplates

Footplates are bolted into the ground to secure the stair system.


Sources: OSHA regulations for fixed, industrial stairs: 1910.25 & 1910.29

IBC Compliant Stairs

IBC Stairs Code & Requirements

The International Building Code (IBC) has many requirements for stairways, and you must also meet the required number of means of egress and areas of refuge for wheelchairs.

IBC Compliant Stairs

Width (IBC 1011.2)

The number of occupants on each floor will determine the required width of the stairs. In short, the width is calculated by multiplying the occupant load served by such stairs by a factor of 0.3 inch per occupant. However, the very minimum width between handrails is 44 inches. You must calculate the IBC stair width for multi-story stairways versus single-story stairways.

Width = 0.3 x floor’s occupant load

Weight (live load) Capacity (IBC 1605)

Uniform live loads. (IBC 1607.3) – The live loads used in the design of buildings and other structures shall be the maximum loads expected by the intended use or occupancy but shall not be less than the minimum uniformly distributed live loads as listed in the below table.
Concentrated live loads. (OBC 1607.4) – Surfaces shall be designed to support the uniformly distributed live loads or the concentrated live loads, whichever produces the greater load effects. Concentrated live loads are uniformly distributed over an area of 2 1/2 feet by 2 1/2 feet (762 mm by 762 mm) and shall be located so as to produce the maximum load effects in the structural members.

UseUniform (PSF)Concentrated (Pounds)
Catwalk40300
Stairs & Exits100300*
Fire Escapes100
Walkways and Elevated Platforms
Other than exitways
60
* The minimum concentrated load on stair treads are based on an area of 2″ x 2″

Read More: Differences in IBC and OSHA Requirements

Headroom (IBC 1011.3)

Stairways are required to have a headroom clearance of 80 inches from the edge of each stair nosing measured vertically up to the ceiling. The clearance must continue past the last step for at least one stair tread depth.

Riser Height and Tread Depth (IBC 1011.5)

The step height, also known as the riser height, must be no less than 4 inches and no greater than 7 inches. The minimum tread depth is 11 inches. If the stairs have nosings, you measure from the leading edge of the nosing to the edge of the next step’s nosing.

ComplianceStair DepthRiser Height
OSHA9.5″ (240 mm)
Minimum
9.5″ (240 mm)
Minimum
IBC11″ (279 mm)
Minimum
4″ (102 mm) – 7″ (178 mm)
Minimum – Maximum

Uniform Dimensions (IBC 1011.5.4)

IBC stairs must have the same riser and tread dimensions throughout the stairway. The difference between the largest and smallest tread depth or riser height cannot be more than 3/8 inch.

Solid Risers (IBC 1011.5.5.3)

Solid risers are required for IBC stairs except for means of egress stairways as long as the opening between treads does not allow a 1/2 inch diameter sphere to pass through.

Landings (IBC 1011.6 & 1009.6.3)

  • There must be a floor or landing at the top and bottom of each stairway.
  • The width of landings must be as wide as the stairways that they serve.
  • Where the stairway has a straight run, the landing does not need to be more than 48 inches deep.
  • Doors opening onto a landing cannot reduce the minimum landing width to less than half.
  • When the door is fully open, it cannot project more than 7 inches into the minimum dimensions of the landing.
  • If a wheelchair space is required for an area of refuge, the wheelchair space cannot be located in the required minimum landing dimensions or door swing.

Stairway Rise (IBC 1011.8)

Every 12 feet of vertical rise, the stairway must have a landing.

Stairway Rise

Walking Surface (IBC 1011.7.1)

  • The slope of the walking surface cannot be greater than 1:48 in any direction.
  • You can have walking surfaces with openings, but the openings cannot allow a 1/2-inch diameter sphere pass through.
  • If the stairs are outside, the design of the IBC stairs cannot allow water to accumulate on the walking surface.

Guards (IBC 1011.13 & 1015)

Guards are required along all open-sided walking surfaces of the stairway, including landings and stairs. The guard height must be at least 42 inches high, and it is measured vertically from the leading edges of the tread nosings or from the landing surface. Any spacing in the guards must be less than 4 inches. Shown below, the guards are vertical balusters, but guards can also be pieces of glass, wire, etc.

Guards

Handrails (IBC 1011.11 & 1014)

Handrails must be on both sides of the IBC stairs, and they must comply with these additional handrail requirements. You could compare all the ADA, OSHA and IBC stair railing height requirements here.

means of egress parts

Means of Egress

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

The means of egress requirements are part of the International Building Code (IBC) which refer to the ability to exit the building and the path to get outside. Every new building must have means of egress, but the number of means of egress paths and sizes differ from building to building.


What is means of egress?

A means of egress is a continuous, clear path from any occupied portion of a building, structure or space to a public way, such as an outdoor sidewalk. A means of egress consists of three parts: exit access, exit, and exit discharge.


Means of egress

A means of egress consists of three parts:

  1. The exit access – path within the building that leads to an exit
  2. The exit – doors to the outside, enclosed exit stairways, and horizontal exits
  3. The exit discharge – the route from the exit to the public way

Are you looking for an IBC-compliant stairway?

Part 1: Exit Access

Exit access is defined as a corridor, hallway, or path in a room to an exit. When the IBC talks about “accessible,” it means that somebody in a wheelchair can use whatever thing they are referring to. Therefore, an “accessible space” means that a person in a wheelchair can enter and exit that space via an “accessible means of egress” (i.e. walkway, ramp, or elevator).

Accessible spaces must have two accessible means of egress, and they are typically required to be no less than 36″ wide.

For Non-accessible spaces, which are floors above or below the ground floor, the accessible pathway must lead to an exit stairway, elevator, or horizontal exit. These areas serve as an Area of Refuge where emergency responders will come to help people in wheelchairs.

The required number of means of egress is determined by occupant load:

Occupant LoadRequired Means of Egress
<5002
500-9993
>1,0004
*Exception: Buildings that have a low occupant load, such as mercantile spaces, only require one exit.

Part 2: Exit

The exit consists of an exit stairway or elevator with standby power. The exit is separated from other interior spaces by fire-resistant construction. Refer to the IBC stair and handrail specifications sheet and the refuge areas to ensure your means of egress are compliant.

Part 3: Exit Discharge

The exit discharge consists of either an accessible route, such as an ADA ramp or walkway, or a stair and platform with a refuge area. Can be inside the building such as the main lobby or outside to an egress court, courtyard, alley, or public way. A public way is defined as an area outside the building between the exit discharge and a public street with a minimum clearance height and width of at least 10 feet.


Related Links

Hurricane header

Secure Aluminum Ramps and Steps for Hurricane

A hurricane anchor and strap are the most reliable way to keep any outdoor aluminum ramps, steps, or canopies secure.

If the product is made and installed by Upside Innovations on concrete, the product should withstand winds from a category 5 hurricane. On concrete, we always install ramps and steps using 3/8” wedge anchors, and canopies are secured with 5/8” wedge anchors. The brand we use is Red Head. If the product is installed on asphalt, we may use asphalt anchors. Below are some of the common anchor types used for securing exterior ramps, stairs, and canopies.

Anchor Options for securing Stairs and Ramps

Anchor Options for securing Stairs and Ramps

Wedge Anchor

Concrete wedge anchors are the perfect choice for heavy-duty applications that require a secure hold. These anchors are extremely popular and offer one of the strongest possible bonds, making them ideal for securing materials and equipment to solid concrete or masonry surfaces. Wedge anchors look and function like a sleeve anchor, but feature a smaller sleeve near the bottom of the anchor. This design provides added holding power and makes them ideal for use in challenging applications.

  • Drill a hole with a diameter equal to the nominal anchor hole at least 1/4” deeper than nominal anchor embedment; align the holes with the holes in the ramp, step, or canopy footplates.
  • Clean out the hole with pressurized air or a vacuum.
  • Hammer the hurricane anchor into the hole, but do not hammer the nut as it will ruin the threads.
  • Upside typically uses Red Head wedge anchors


Asphalt Anchor

Asphalt is relatively weak when it comes to anchoring structures to it. As the name implies, asphalt anchors are ideal for attaching items to an asphalt surface and are installed by drilling an oversized hole, adding expanding cement or low shrink epoxy, and then pushing in the anchor. After curing, the bolt can be removed.

  • Drill a hole in the asphalt that is equal to the diameter of the anchor; make sure the holes in the asphalt align with the holes in the footplates.
  • Fill the hole with grout.
  • Push in the hurricane anchor.
  • More detailed installation instructions at BoltHold Anchor Installation Guide

Hard Rock Anchor

Hard rock anchors are designed for applications that are solid rock with rods that are driven into the rock.

  • Drill a 5/8” hole 5.5” deep and on a 90° angle on the center of the anchor location for the pilot stud.
  • Drill (2) 3/4” holes at 45° angles using the anchor head as a location guide.
  • Place the rod through the top of (1) square tube and into the hole.
  • To achieve minimum allowable pullout resistance, drive the rod at least 24” into the surface.
  • Place the second rod through the other tube.
  • The distance from the square tubing to the ground surface should not exceed 1”.
  • Use the strap to wrap around the cross-bracing of the ramp or step; secure the strap with the bolts and nuts at the top of the anchor.

If the product is resting on soil: you can secure it by using an earth auger anchor.

Auger Anchor

Auger anchors are easy to install and screw directly into soil, sand or gravel.

  • Use a metal rod through the eye of the anchor to drive it into the ground.
  • Wrap the strap around the cross-bracing of the ramp or step, and loop through the eye of the anchor.

Still don’t know which product is best? Give us a call.

ADA Compliant Logo

Difference Between ADA and OSHA

We use the terms “ADA” and “OSHA” so often when referring to our access products, and sometimes we forget that people might not know the difference.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, and retail locations. There is a set of regulations that public buildings must follow. Below are the key ADA-compliant regulations for steps:

  • All steps should have uniform riser heights and tread widths
  • Stair treads should be no less than 11″ wide (measured from riser to riser)
    • Open risers are not permitted
  • Handrail gripping surface shall be mounted between 34” and 38” with railing height above stair nosings
  • The ends of the handrails should be rounded or returned smoothly to the floor

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was created to assure safe and healthful working conditions for employees. These regulations apply to steps that are used by employees only, not steps that are open to the public.

  • The minimum dimension for landings is 22” wide x 30” deep
  • All stairs with four or more risers are required to have handrails and guardrails
  • Variations in riser height or stair tread depth must not exceed .25″ in any stairway
  • Stairways must be installed between 30 and 50 degrees from the horizontal

Whether you need ADA steps for public access or OSHA steps for workplace safety, Upside has the solution.

OSHA Dual-Step
OSHA Crossover Stairs
ADA stairtower and ramp for modular school

Calculating Multi-Story Stairway Width

If you haven’t read our IBC Stair Width Calculation article, I recommend reading that first so that you can see the IBC codes we reference. If you have already read it, below is a scenario in which we calculate the required width of multiple stairways that serve multiple floors.

multi-story stairway width calculation

Scenario: We need exit stairs for a building that has 3 floors that have varying occupant loads. There is a sprinkler system, but the system was not installed per code requirements. The occupant loads are as follows:

Floor 1: 40 occupants
Floor 2: 480 occupants
Floor 3: 110 occupants

The required total stairway width per floor is as follows:

Floor 1: 40 occupants x 0.3” = 12” (BUT the minimum stairway width for a floor serving less than 50 occupants is 36”. Can you imagine trying to walk down a 12” wide stairway?)
Floor 2: 480 occupants x 0.3” = 144”
Floor 3: 110 occupants x 0.3” = 33” (BUT the minimum stairway width for a floor serving more than 50 occupants is 44”.)

What do we do when each floor requires a different width? We use the largest minimum width because we don’t want to create a bottleneck effect where a wide stairway leads into a narrower stairway.

Bottleneck at Stairs

Therefore, we want to use the 144” measurement for the minimum combined stair width.

We will need two stairways because we have an occupant load between 1 and 500 per story. The 144″ width can be divided between the two stairways. BUT in case a stairway is destroyed or inaccessible during an evacuation, the remaining stairway needs to be at least half of the required minimum (144″). We cannot have a stairway that is 60” wide and the other one is 84”. Why? If we lose the 84” stairway to a fire, we only have the 60” stairway which is less than half the required width.

Summary: We calculate the minimum required combined width by multiplying the occupant load of each floor by 0.3″ and using the largest number, which is 144″. We need two stairways, so we can divide the 144″ between the two stairs. However, since we only have two stairways, each stairway must be at least half of the 144″.

ADA Ramp Slope Illustration showing Calculations

Calculating Single-Story IBC Stairway Width

If you haven’t read our IBC Stair Width Calculation article, I recommend reading that first so that you can see the IBC codes we reference. If you have already read it, below is a scenario in which we calculate the required width of a multiple stairways serving one floor.

Scenario: We need exit stairs from the second story of a building. There is a sprinkler system, but the system was not installed per code requirements. The occupant loads are as follows:

Floor 1: 175 occupants
Floor 2: 300 occupants

The required total stairway width per floor is as follows:

Floor 1: Not applicable because this floor is ground level.
Floor 2: 300 occupants x 0.3” = 90”

We will need two stairways because we have an occupant load between 1 and 500 per story. The 90″ width can be divided between the two stairways. BUT in case a stairway is destroyed or inaccessible during an evacuation, the remaining stairway needs to be at least half of the required minimum (144″). We cannot have a stairway that is 44” wide and the other one is 46”. Why? If we lose the 46” stairway to a fire, we only have the 44” stairway which is less than half the required width.

Summary: We calculate the minimum required combined width by multiplying the occupant load of the floor by 0.3″, which is 90″. We need two stairways, so we can divide the 90″ between the two stairs. However, since we only have two stairways, each stairway must be at least half of the 90″.

single story stairway width calculation
IBC Second Story Stair Width

IBC Stair Width Calculation

ARE YOU MEASURING STAIR EGRESS WIDTHS CORRECTLY?

Stair egress measurements are commonly misunderstood and can be complicated because it is determined by the building’s occupant load. Should stairs be measured between handrails since this is where occupants can walk, or is it the entire width of the treads? This article is a simplified version of the IBC codes and addresses common questions associated with stair egress width.

Egress Width Factors

How do I determine my “calculated stair egress width”?

IBC Section 1005.3.1 requires that “the capacity, in inches, of means of egress stairways shall be calculated by multiplying the occupant load served by such stairway by a means of egress capacity factor of 0.3 inch per occupant”.

Exceptions are if there is a compliant sprinkler system installed and equipped with an emergency voice/alarm system for all occupancies other than Group H (High Hazard) and I-2 (Health Care), multiply the occupant loads by 0.2 and 0.15 inch per occupant, respectively, not 0.3.

For stairs serving one floor, multiply the floor’s occupant load by 0.3. For stairs serving multiple floors, multiply the occupant load of the floor that serves the most people by 0.3. These calculations give you the required COMBINED width of all exit stairs serving that floor. However, the minimum clear width between handrails is 44″. If the stairway serves a floor with an occupant load of less than 50, the minimum clear width is reduced to 36″. 


Multi-story stairs

calculating multi-story stair width


Single-story stairs

calculating single-story stair width

Here’s where it gets tricky.

There is a minimum number of exits that is based on the occupant load per story:

Occupant Load Per StoryMinimum Number of Exits or Access to Exits from Story
1-5002
501-1,0003
More than 1,0004

The combined width calculation performed above must be distributed between the minimum number of required exits while still meeting the minimum width requirement.

AND if one exit stairway is “lost” (i.e. occupants cannot access it due to a fire) the remaining stairway width(s) cannot be reduced to less than half the required combined width. This applies typically when there are only two stairways because if you lose one, there is only one stairway left. If you originally have three stairways and lose one, you still have two stairways left.

Summary: calculate the total width per floor you need by multiplying the occupant load by 0.3″ and in some cases 0.2″. Take the largest width that you calculate, and use it for the entire stairway system. Keep in mind, the minimum clear width is typically 44″, but it is sometimes reduced to 36″ for low-capacity floors. Then, figure out how many exits are required by referencing the chart above, and divide the required width between the required number of stairways. That’s it! Reference the IBC codes below to check your work.

Calculating Single-Story IBC Stairway Width

Scenario: We need exit stairs from the second story of a building. There is a sprinkler system, but the system was not installed per code requirements. The occupant loads are as follows:

Floor 1: 175 occupants
Floor 2: 300 occupants

The required total stairway width per floor is as follows:

Floor 1: Not applicable because this floor is ground level.
Floor 2: 300 occupants x 0.3” = 90”

We will need two stairways because we have an occupant load between 1 and 500 per story. The 90″ width can be divided between the two stairways. BUT in case a stairway is destroyed or inaccessible during an evacuation, the remaining stairway needs to be at least half of the required minimum (144″). We cannot have a stairway that is 44” wide and the other one is 46”. Why? If we lose the 46” stairway to a fire, we only have the 44” stairway which is less than half the required width.

Summary: We calculate the minimum required combined width by multiplying the occupant load of the floor by 0.3″, which is 90″. We need two stairways, so we can divide the 90″ between the two stairs. However, since we only have two stairways, each stairway must be at least half of the 90″.

single story stairway width calculation

Calculating Multi-Story Stairway Width

Below is a scenario in which we calculate the required width of multiple stairways that serve multiple floors.

multi-story stairway width calculation

Scenario: We need exit stairs for a building that has 3 floors that have varying occupant loads. There is a sprinkler system, but the system was not installed per code requirements. The occupant loads are; Floor 1: 40 occupants, Floor 2: 480 occupants and Floor 3: 110 occupants

The required total stairway width per floor is as follows:

FloorOccupant LoadRequired total stairway width
1st4040 occupants x 0.3” = 12” 36″
*Minimum width for less than 50 occupants is 36”
2nd480480 occupants x 0.3” = 144”
3rd110110 occupants x 0.3” = 33” 44″
*Minimum width for a floor serving more than 50 occupants is 44”

What do we do when each floor requires a different width? We use the largest minimum width because we don’t want to create a bottleneck effect where a wide stairway leads into a narrower stairway.

Bottleneck at Stairs

Therefore, we want to use the 144” measurement for the minimum combined stair width.

We will need two stairways because we have an occupant load between 1 and 500 per story. The 144″ width can be divided between the two stairways. BUT in case a stairway is destroyed or inaccessible during an evacuation, the remaining stairway needs to be at least half of the required minimum (144″). We cannot have a stairway that is 60” wide and the other one is 84”. Why? If we lose the 84” stairway to a fire, we only have the 60” stairway which is less than half the required width.

Summary: We calculate the minimum required combined width by multiplying the occupant load of each floor by 0.3″ and using the largest number, which is 144″. We need two stairways, so we can divide the 144″ between the two stairs. However, since we only have two stairways, each stairway must be at least half of the 144″.


Referenced IBC Code:

1005.3.1 Stairways  The capacity, in inches, of means of egress stairways shall be calculated by multiplying the occupant load served by such stairways by a means of egress capacity factor of 0.3 inch per occupant. Where stairways serve more than one story, only the occupant load of each story considered individually shall be used in calculating the required capacity of the stairways serving that story.

Exceptions: For other than Group H and I-2 occupancies, the capacity, in inches, of means of egress stairways shall be calculated by multiplying the occupant load served by such stairways by a means of egress capacity factor of 0.2 inch per occupant in buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2 and an emergency voice/alarm communication system in accordance with Section 907.5.2.2.

1005.4 Continuity The maximum capacity required from any story of a building shall be maintained to the termination of the means of egress.

1005.5 Distribution of Minimum Width and Required Capacity Where more than one exit, or access to more than one exit, is required, the means of egress shall be configured such that the loss of any one exit, or access to one exit, shall not reduce the available capacity or width to less than 50 percent of the required capacity or width.

1011.2 Width & Capacity The required capacity of stairways shall be determined as specified in Section 1005.1, but the minimum width shall be not less than 44 inches. See Section 1009.3 for accessible means of egress stairways.

Exceptions: Stairways serving an occupant load of less than 50 shall have a width of not less than 36 inches.

1022.1 Exits Once a given level of exit protection is achieved, such level of protection shall not be reduced until arrival at the exit discharge.

metal-stair-types

5 Styles of Industrial Work Platforms

Our industrial work platforms give employees safe access to equipment and machinery in both indoor and outdoor applications. The step platforms feature partial or full adjustability, rust-free aluminum, and fall protection systems for optimal safety. Click on the standard industrial work platform options below to see product details.

How does the fully adjustable step platform work?

Fully Adjustable Step Platform With Handrail On One Side

The Omni Steps are fully adjustable and can accommodate any height within the given range. They are perfect if the required height is unknown or if they need to be moved frequently. The standard Omni Step ranges are:

1) Small Omni Step: 21″ – 26″
2) Medium Omni Step: 28″ – 35″
3) Large Omni Step: 35″ – 44″

Small Omni Step Platform

Medium Omni Step Platform

Large Omni Step Platform

Fully Adjustable Step Platform With Handrail On Two Sides

The T-Bone Omni Steps have the same adjustability as the standard Omni Steps, and the only difference is the added handrail. Depending on the application, you may want handrails on one or both sides. The standard T-Bone Omni Step ranges are:

1) Small T-Bone Omni Step: 21″ – 26″
2) Medium T-Bone Omni Step: 28″ – 35″
3) Large T-Bone Omni Step: 35″ – 44″

Small T-Bone Omni Step Platform

Medium T-Bone Omni Step Platform

Large T-Bone Omni Step Platform

Fully Adjustable Crossover Step Platform With Handrails

The Crossover Steps are made of two adjustable T-Bone Omni Steps with an interconnecting work platform; these industrial work platforms are commonly used because they give employees convenient access from two sides to the equipment or machinery. Standard Crossover Steps are fully adjustable and can accommodate any height within the given range:

1) Small T-Bone Omni Step: 21″ – 26″
2) Medium T-Bone Omni Step: 28″ – 35″
3) Large T-Bone Omni Step: 35″ – 44″

Small Crossover Step Platform

Medium Crossover Step Platform

Large Crossover Step Platform

Partially Adjustable Step Platform With Handrail On One Side

The Dual Steps are partially adjustable in the sense that the work platform can be set at either of the two specified heights. Standard height options include:

1) Small T-Bone Dual Step: 28″ or 35″
2) Medium T-Bone Dual Step: 35″ or 42″
3) Large T-Bone Dual Step: 42″ or 49″

Small Dual Step Platform

Medium Dual Step Platform

Large Dual Step Platform

Partially Adjustable Step Platform With Handrail On Two Sides

The T-Bone Dual Steps have handrails on both sides of the step platform and are partially adjustable in the sense that the work platform can be set at either of the two specified heights. Standard height options include:

1) Small T-Bone Dual Step: 28″ or 35″
2) Medium T-Bone Dual Step: 35″ or 42″
3) Large T-Bone Dual Step: 42″ or 49″

Small T-Bone Dual Step Platform

Medium T-Bone Dual Step Platform

Large T-Bone Dual Step Platform

Need a custom quote? No problem. Contact us for details on custom industrial work platforms.

loading dock stairs

Exterior Stairs – 5 Reasons Property Owners Prefer Aluminum

More and more commercial and industrial property owners are switching from galvanized steel to aluminum exterior stairs. Here are five reasons why:

1. Long product life

Unlike steel, galvanized steel, and wood, aluminum will never rust, warp, or rot, so the structural integrity and original appearance remain intact longer than other common materials.

Explanation:

Unlike any other material, aluminum is corrosion resistant; when it reacts with oxygen in the air, a thin layer of oxide forms and naturally protects the material from elemental corrosion. The oxide layer may make the aluminum appear dull, but it does not impact the structural integrity. The oxide layer is self-repairing when damaged and provides better adhesion for paint primers and glues than other bare metals.

Until the use of aluminum, galvanized steel was a popular choice because it was somewhat corrosion-resistant. A protective zinc coating applied to the material in the galvanization process prevents rusting initially; however, the zinc coating eventually develops a natural carbonate on its surface from the process of atmospheric sulfur dioxide combining with rainwater, resulting in sulfuric acid – the main component of acid rain.

exterior step installation

Sulfur dioxide is emitted from the combustion of fossil fuels which means there is a higher concentration in highly-industrialized areas (which is typically where these stairs are used) due to the high volume of vehicles. The carbonate on the surface of the galvanized steel becomes brittle and eventually splits, exposing fresh zinc that corrodes. Since the zinc coating is thin, the base metal is also often exposed and corrodes as well.

Takeaway:

In highly-industrialized areas with a high volume of freight trucks, galvanized steel experiences corrosion while aluminum will maintain structural integrity.

2. No required maintenance

Aluminum is more corrosion-resistant than any other material and does not require regular maintenance.

Explanation:

The only maintenance for aluminum stairs is to ensure that the pathway is free of snow, leaves, and other natural elements. For snow removal, we recommend a magnesium chloride ice melt because most typical ice melts are too harsh for aluminum and can damage the surface.

This is in contrast to the routine maintenance required for galvanized steel stairs which will begin to rust if the protective zinc coating is scratched. Therefore, it is recommended to routinely apply a protective coating so that the barrier between the water and the metal is maintained. Property owners have expressed dissatisfaction with this required maintenance of galvanized steel. When stairs are located in a region where it snows, removal of ice and snow can be problematic because all ice melts eat away at the zinc coating.

Takeaway:

Property owners report that steel is extremely hard to maintain, especially in climates where it rains and snows often, and aluminum is much less work.

3. Simple installation

Our product is prefabricated, requiring only a few bolts for assembly. While steel prefabricated solutions exist, aluminum is much lighter which means that the aluminum exterior stairs are easier and faster to install and require less manpower.

Check out our dock step installation guide to see how easy it is. Someone with no experience could assemble a dock-high stair system in a couple hours.

Assembly Instructions for Loading Dock Step

4. Optimal strength-to-weight ratio

Aluminum meets the capacity requirements, and it’s easier than steel to install because it is lightweight.

Explanation:

Aluminum is approximately 1/3 the density of steel and weighs much less.

Upside Innovations’ distributed load is 100 lbs. per square foot with a point load of 300 lbs., the load requirements specified by the International Building Code for new construction means of egress. While galvanized steel is stronger than aluminum, aluminum exceeds the requirements for pedestrian access applications and is preferred because of its many other benefits.

5. Potentially cut costs

Property owners can save money upfront by switching from galvanized steel exterior stairs to aluminum. Typically steel stairs are manufactured by small, local companies with less capital which means higher prices.

Explanation:

One of the largest commercial real estate companies in the world, Prologis, just changed its new construction specifications from galvanized steel dock-high steps to Upside Innovations’ aluminum dock-high steps. Switching to aluminum will save them roughly 20-30% upfront and an additional variable amount from reduced yearly maintenance costs. The cost per unit for the previously used galvanized steel stairs was high because the stairs were produced on a project-to-project basis by local, custom steel fabricators that didn’t have large-scale production capabilities. Upside Innovations has a large-scale manufacturing operation of aluminum stairs for nationwide delivery, meaning that the cost per unit is drastically lower than the aforementioned galvanized stairs.

There are instances when the upfront price of aluminum exterior stairs is not always less expensive than galvanized steel because the raw material is typically more expensive; however, the cost of the cost of aluminum stairs over the course of their life will be less because galvanized steel incurs routine maintenance costs whereas aluminum does not.

Takeaway:

Over time, aluminum has proven to be less expensive because galvanized steel requires yearly maintenance costs.

second story ada stairs

ADA Stair Landing Requirements

This guide will help you determine the required ADA stair landing width and length that will also accommodate door swing and an area of refuge. We refer to the International Building Code (IBC) which is required for new construction, because it also covers ADA landing requirements.

ADA Stair Landings

– A landing must be at the top and bottom of each stairway.

– A landing is required every 12′ of vertical stairway rise.

– The landing should be at least as wide as the stairway that it serves. How wide does my stairway need to be?

– The length (measured in the direction of travel) should be greater or equal to the width. For a stairway that has a straight run through a platform, the platform does not need to exceed 48″ in length.

– The landing surface should not be sloped steeper than 1:48 in any direction.

Need an ADA stair and landing?

ADA Stair Landings with Doors:

– Landings should be at least as wide as the stairway or the door, whichever is greater.

– When a landing serves an occupant load of 50 or more, doors in any position should not reduce the landing size to less than 1/2 the required width.

– When the door is fully open, it should not project more than 7″ into the required minimum landing dimensions.

*Required when the stairway serves more than 50 occupants

ADA Stair Landings that Require Area of Refuge:

– If the stairway requires an area of refuge, you must have a 30″ x 48″ space for every 200 occupants.

– Access to any of the required wheelchair spaces in an area of refuge cannot be obstructed by more than one adjoining wheelchair space.

– The area of refuge cannot overlap the required width of the landing.

– The door swing cannot overlap the area of refuge.

Sources:

IBC Chapter 10 Means of Egress

  • 1009.3 Accessible Means of Egress: Stairways
  • 1010.1.6 Doors, Gates, and Turnstiles: Landings at Doors
  • 1011.2 Stairways: Width and Capacity
  • 1011.6 Stairways: Stairway Landings
  • 1011.8 Stairways: Vertical Rise
Warehouse stairs

New Warehouse Steps

Rust is another name for iron oxide. The process of oxidation occurs when a metal reacts with oxygen in the presence of water or moisture in the air. Given enough time and exposure to oxygen and water, any iron mass will convert to rust and disintegrate. The life of the product can be prolonged by galvanizing the metal which provides a protective layer of metallic zinc. However, galvanization often fails at seams, holes, and joints where there are gaps in the coatings. Therefore, galvanization provides protection for only a limited period of time. The chipped paint is most likely due to age, which is unavoidable.

As time goes on, the cohesive bond strength continues to develop. Cohesion, in laymen’s terms, means that the paint particles are sticking to each other better and better over time. Therefore, the cohesive bond strength can overwhelm the adhesive strength of the coating to the metal. The steps are no longer compliant with OSHA regulations since the concrete and metal have created uneven step treads along with large “lumps” in the tread nosing.

ADA-compliance is typically necessary for loading dock steps because non-affiliated delivery workers may use the steps to drop off small loads. Since the stairs are used by non-employees, ADA regulations must be followed.

Upside Innovations makes every product from aluminum because of its weather-resistant properties and high tensile strength. More benefits of aluminum are: Aluminum oxidizes when exposed to oxygen and moisture, but the result is not rust. Oxidation on aluminum actually strengthens the material instead of deteriorating it. This means that over time, aluminum becomes stronger.

The powder coating is typically applied electrostatically and then cured under heat. This makes the coating form a “skin” that is much less likely to experience the cohesion and chipping that paint experiences.

For a loading dock application, ADA-compliant warehouse steps are usually required. All of Upside’s loading dock steps are compliant with the latest ADA regulation. If ADA is not required for the application, the OSHA-compliant step is available.

Elevated walkway stairs

Aluminum Generator Access Platform

A generator access platform and the steps are important for providing safe, compliant access to the employees who provide maintenance to generators. Platforms and steps typically comply with walking-working surfaces and OSHA regulations for fixed stairways which means that there are several regulations for tread depth, tread width, riser height, platform size, guardrail height, and more.

Rendering of an APEX generator access stairs

A generator access platform requires a guardrail system if the platform is more than 4′ above the ground or lower level. Still, for optimal safety, many employers choose a guardrail system regardless of the platform height. The guardrail system consists of top rails and midrails (or some other intermediate object between the top rail and platform). The top edge of the top rails must be between 39″ and 45″ above the walking surface, while the midrail must be installed at the midpoint between the walking surface and the top edge of the top rail.

Generator Platform OSHA-Compliant Dimensions

Typical OSHA-compliant dimensions for generator steps:

  • 6.5″ riser height
  • 11″ tread depth
  • 38″ tread width
  • 38″ clearance between handrails
  • 36″ handrail height

Read the OSHA regulations for fixed stairways to view all generator access step regulations.

Upside Innovations worked on a project involving two generators that required OSHA-compliant access consisting of platforms and steps. The end-user wanted the two generators to be connected by the platform so that maintenance personnel wouldn’t have to go up and down each generator’s set of steps. Upside designed a custom solution so that employees could access both generators via a continuous platform.

OSHA-compliant access consisting of platforms and steps
OSHA-compliant access consisting of platforms and steps
Ramp Decking Material

Modular Classroom Access – ADA Steps and Ramps

Our team designs, manufactures, and installs ADA steps, ADA ramps, and canopies for modular classrooms. We work on all types of projects from single classrooms to large, modular school complexes.

Modular Classroom Access – ADA Steps and Ramps

Case Study:

We manufactured and installed steps, ramps, and a canopy for modular classroom access in West Virginia. The modular classrooms were a temporary solution because the original school building had water damage from the 2016 flood. FEMA helped provide resources for the school, and the organization contracted Modular Genius to supply the modular classrooms.

In total, the Modular Genius supplied 45,000 square feet of space. After installing the modular classrooms, Modular Genius purchased aluminum steps, ramps, and a canopy from us. Below are overhead images of the completed project.

In total, we supplied 10 ADA steps, 3 ADA ramps, and a walkway canopy. We installed the steps and ramps throughout the complex, so each building had ADA access. We installed the canopy over the shared walkway, which connected three of the modular classrooms together.

Ramps and steps for modular classrooms
Ramps, Steps, and Canopy provided by Upside Innovations
Orange dot = ADA-compliant steps; Black dot = ADA-compliant ramps

Check out Upside’s ADA stairs and ADA ramps.

Crossover stairs over conveyor

Crossover Metal Stairs for Industrial Applications

Crossover Stair

Crossover metal stairs have at least two sets of stairs that are connected by one or more platforms and are designed to allow employees to safely travel up and over physical barriers in the workplace. Without stairs that provide access over the barriers, employees could be injured if they try to climb over or crawl under the object. The crossover stairs must comply with OSHA regulations to ensure that employees will not fall.

Aluminum is the most common material used for crossover steps because it is lightweight yet strong, and it won’t rust in a wet or humid environment. Steel is sometimes used, but it will rust, it is more expensive, and it’s bulkier than aluminum.

Crossover metals stairs commonly provide access over barriers such as conveyor belts, industrial pipes and ducts, and walls that don’t extend all the way to the ceiling. There are a variety of common crossover stair layouts that can accommodate a variety of barrier sizes, locations, and configurations.

Simplified Crossover Layouts:

crossover metal stairs layout
C-SHAPE CROSSOVER
crossover metal stairs layout
H-SHAPE CROSSOVER
Crossover metal stairs layout
STRAIGHT CROSSOVER
Crossover metal stairs layout
L-SHAPE CROSSOVER
Crossover metal stairs layout
Z-SHAPE CROSSOVER

The C-shape layout below was designed to help employees cross over a conveyor belt that moved materials through a small opening and into another room. The crossover platform was designed to be high enough to give enough clearance underneath so that the materials could still fit through the opening.

11221 REV-A.dft

This is the final set of crossover metal stairs installed to give access over the conveyor belt. The step risers are of equal heights, and guardrails are provided for fall-protection.


Upside Innovations will custom design a set of crossover metal stairs to meet your specifications whereas many suppliers offer a standard product that may not fit your unique application. The Upside Crossover Steps can utilize either a Grip Strut walking surface or an extruded, aluminum decking. Grip Strut is more of an aggressive tread with holes in the surface, and extruded decking is a solid surface with little raised strips for traction.

clark-associates

Trailer Stairs

Stairs for Mobile Office Trailers

Our stairs for mobile office trailers are the best option for temporary jobs such as construction sites because they are adjustable. They are unlike other portable stairs in the market because when they adjust, they keep an even height between all treads.

The difference between our stairs and others’:

Our Omni Stairs:

Every tread adjusts at the same time, so there are even step heights.

Stairs for Mobile Office Trailers

Other stairs:

Only the bottom tread adjusts, so it will have a different height than the rest of the treads.

Stairs for Mobile Office Trailers

The stairs are fully adjustable, so they will fit on a range of heights. There are two main benefits of being able to fit multiple door threshold heights:

1) The stairs can be used for other jobs after they are no longer needed on the current site.

2) If the trailer door height is not measured correctly or the ground is sloping, our stairs will still work if the door height is within the range.

View our mobile office stair sizes.

How it works:

The video below demonstrates how the 28″ – 35″ Omni Step works. The stairs have a pivoting riser assembly that can adjust anywhere between two outer limits. Then, simply attach the stair platform to the threshold, hook the step riser onto the platform, and let the steps pivot down to the ground.

Do you need portable stairs for your mobile office?

OMNI Step Render for Mezzanine Access

In-Plant, Modular Office Stairs

In-plant offices are becoming more popular because the modular building industry is growing, and it is becoming easier and cheaper to access modular, in-plant offices. It is common to stack the modular offices on top of each other to save floorspace which means that a set of OSHA-compliant steps is required for the upper level. What material do most people use?

It is common to use either aluminum or steel steps because they typically last longer than wood and are quicker to assemble. In the past, people used steel more often than aluminum because aluminum was more expensive. Now, steel and aluminum are both in the same price range, so more people are starting to choose aluminum over steel. Aluminum is becoming the more popular choice for three reasons:

1. Lightweight. Aluminum is typically 1/3 the weight of steel. An adjustable, aluminum staircase (shown below) weighs approximately 650 lbs. including the platform. The alternative product made out of steel weighs nearly 2,000 lbs., making it a much more difficult product to handle.

2. Easily installed. Since aluminum is so much lighter than steel, it takes less time and effort to assemble the aluminum staircase. To install heavy, second-story steps made out of steel, people usually opt to rent special equipment to help move the product which increases the overall installation cost.

3. Corrosion resistant. If the indoor environment is ever exposed to water or experiences humidity, an aluminum staircase will last longer than a steel staircase because aluminum does not rust. Steel can be galvanized which protects the material from rusting, however, if the protective layer is ever scratched or damaged, the material is susceptible to rust.

Standard, OSHA-Compliant Staircase:

Product description:
OSHA-compliant, second-story staircase for in-plant, modular offices. It has heavy-duty stringers and optional cross-bracing for added strength which makes this style perfect for permanent applications. This product is made-to-order and must have exact threshold measurements to fit the application.

In-plant office stairs

Adjustable Omni, OHSA-Compliant Staircase:

Product description:
OSHA-compliant, second-story staircase for in-plant, modular offices. This staircase is adjustable which means that it can work for any threshold height between 8.5′ and 10.5′. It weighs less than the OSHA step featured above, so if the offices are not in a permanent location, the Omni step is the right choice.

Adjustable stairs for in-plant offices
Warehouse stairs

Reusable Aluminum Steps

Our aluminum steps debuted at the U.S. Women’s Open Golf Tournament this July! One of our customers ordered several sets of second-story steps last year for multiple event locations in Florida. This year, they disassembled the steps, moved them to New Jersey, and set them up for the golf tournament.

View the installation guide below to see just how easy it is to assemble and disassemble Upside’s aluminum steps.

  • Lay the platform upside down on the ground.
  • Insert 4 platform legs into the corner pockets, and make sure the holes align as shown in the picture.
  • Use (2) 1″ bolts with (2) flat washers to secure each leg to each pocket.
  • The bolts will thread into the pre-installed rivet nuts in the ends of the platform legs.
  • Insert 4 platform base legs into the platform legs, and make sure the holes align with the slots as shown in the picture.
  • Use (2) 1″ bolts with (2) lock washers and (2) flat washers to secure each base leg to each platform leg at the desired height.
  • The bolts will thread into the pre-installed rivet nuts in the base legs.
  • This connection may need to be adjusted later in order to level the platform.
  • Set the platform against the building just below the threshold.
  • Use a 4′ level to determine if the platform is level in both directions.
  • If adjustments need to be made, loosen the (2) 1″ bolts that connect the base leg to the platform leg, and telescope the base leg up or down to the appropriate height and retighten the bolts.
  • A bolt may need to be completely removed if it runs into the end of the slot.
  • Reinstall the bolt in another hole that will appear at the opposite end of the same slot and retighten.
  • Locate the step connector hook and bolt it to the platform on the side where the step will be installed. As shown, the step is on the center of the platform. Consult the job-specific layout to determine where the step should be connected to the platform.
  • Use (4) 1″ bolts with (4) flat washers and (4) flange nuts to connect the plate to the platform side through the four holes. If holes in the platform edge are missing, they will need to be drilled through with a 7/16″ drill bit
  • Lift the upper end of the step riser, and hook it onto the hook that was previously bolted to the platform.
  • Insert the step guardrail posts into the upper and lower pockets on the step riser until the pre-installed rivet nuts in the posts align with the slots in the pockets.
  • Use (8) 1″ bolts with flat washers to secure the four posts to the four pockets. Thread the bolts into the rivet nuts in the step rail posts through the slots in the upper and lower pockets on the step riser.
  • Steps over 50″ high will have three posts per guardrail instead of two as shown.
  • At the top of each step, two step keys are required to secure the step to the platform.
  • Orient the key against the back side of the upper pockets on the step riser.
  • Use (2) 1-1/4″ tek screws to secure the step key to the platform decking. The holes in the key should be used as a drilling guide.
Render of APEX Stairs with Cleaning Products

How to Clean Aluminum Stairs

Cleaning Untreated Aluminum Steps

Aluminum is a light, but strong material that is common for outdoor applications because it is weather-resistant. It is weather-resistant in the sense that it doesn’t rust, but it does form a natural layer of oxide through the process called “oxidation.”

The galvanizing process protects other metals, wherein a zinc coating envelops the base metal like iron or steel to slow down oxidation.

Oxidation can be a baffling occurrence because it is a natural chemical reaction. Unlike corrosion that occurs on other metals, it does not weaken the aluminum – it actually strengthens the material. This makes aluminum a superior metal compared to others because of this inherent quality.

Oxidation creates a protective barrier against water and rust, but it can make the aluminum less attractive over time. If you know how to properly clean aluminum stairs, it will decrease the chances of severe oxidation.

Step 1: The first step is to make sure that all debris including mud, dust, and leaves are all cleared off the steps. To do this, you must start at the top landing of the steps with a stiff-bristled broom, and sweep all the debris over the side of the platform or down the steps one by one; the stringers that run along both edges of the steps may make it difficult to push the debris over the sides. The stiff-bristled broom is recommended to clean out the grooves of the step treads, but don’t try to scrub the treads with the broom as it might scratch the aluminum.

Step 2: After sweeping the debris off of the aluminum stairs, rinse it with water and mild detergent such as dish soap. Use a generous amount of dish soap over the length of the staircase, and put a concentrated amount on tough spots. Let it sit for a couple of minutes. Next, hose off or lightly pressure wash the steps to remove the soap and dirt. It is suggested to use filtered water if possible because unfiltered water may contain sulfur, chlorine, fluoride, and other minerals that could damage the aluminum over time. Make sure that all dish soap is washed off before the steps are used because the soap and water makes the aluminum slippery.Step 3: If there is still dirt on the stairs, use a towel and dish soap to scrub the area. Do not use steel wool or scour pads because these materials can scratch the aluminum and give it a dull appearance. Do not use harsh cleaners like baking soda or alkali-based cleaners as these can cause discoloration. If you want to try a new type of cleaner, test an area on the underside of the staircase to see if it discolors the aluminum.

Step 4: If the aluminum has already oxidized, try spot-treating the oxidized areas with an aluminum cleaner like Aluma Kleen or Aluma Bright.

Cleaning Powder-Coated Aluminum Steps

The process to clean aluminum metal stairs that are powder-coated is similar, but the powder-coating is a little more delicate than the aluminum. If the aluminum steps are powder-coated, there is less chance of oxidation because the powder-coating provides an extra layer of defense. However, if the coating is scratched, oxidation spots can still form.

Aluminum switchback ramp with powder coating

Step 1: Brush off the steps, moving from top to bottom, with a stiff-bristled broom. Do not try to scrub the steps with the broom as it might scratch the aluminum.

Step 2: The most efficient way to clean outdoor aluminum steps with a powder-coated finish is with a pressure washer using filtered water on low pressure. Use a mild detergent such as dish soap, and DO NOT use chlorine or harsh cleaning solutions. High water pressure and harsh cleaning products can damage the powder-coated finish. The commercial cleaning solutions will clean the surface, but they also remove micro layers of finish. The layer might later become hard and crack while losing its protective barrier.

Step 3: As stated above, use a soft brush or cloth to clean the surface; do not use anything that has hard bristles or a scratchy pad.

Step 4: To keep powder-coated steps looking nice, try a high-grade, non-abrasive car wax that contains U.V. blocker and/or U.V. inhibitors. Be sure to wipe off residual wax because it could bake in the heat and cause permanent staining. It is recommended, as with any other product applied to the staircase, make a test area on the underside of the steps.

commercial-stairs-hero

Adjustable Steps for Modular Offices

Modular buildings and trailers are often used as temporary, portable offices on construction sites. As you know, the ground levels change from site to site, and it can be hard to find portable OSHA steps for modulars and trailers. We have designed the Omni Step which is a fully adjustable stair system, and it is portable so that it can be reused as you move the trailer.

What is the Omni Step?

Our portable Omni Stairs are compliant with OSHA regulations, and it can be adjusted to any height within the specified range. We offer single-story modular office stairs or second-story modular office stairs.

Why is it the best option?

Aluminum is lightweight which means that transportation is easy, and we designed the stair system for fast and simple installation and de-installation. It typically takes less than 10 minutes to install or de-install the stair system.

The entire stair system is adjustable to meet ANY height within the range, and keep equal riser heights. Other stairs on the market offer an adjustable bottom step tread, which is not OSHA compliant. Can you imagine walking down a set of stairs and having a larger gap on the last step at the bottom?

What are the sizes?

The Omni Step has the following ranges:

21″- 26″
28″- 35″
35″- 44″
42″- 52″
102″- 126″

View our OSHA step specifications.

portable mobile office stairs

Our Services

Our team designs, manufactures, ships, and installs ADA & IBC-compliant stairs, ramps and canopies to fit YOUR custom project. Our experts will work with you throughout the project to ensure your installation is correct to your specifications and code compliant.

Design Version 2Next serviceManufacture V2 GraphicNext serviceShip Icon V2Next serviceInstall Version 2