This paper discusses an evaluation of stairway designs featured in Architectural Record, a leading architectural professional journal, over a thirteen-year publication period (2000 to 2012). Images of stairways were classified as either hazard-free or hazard(s)-present using a hazard identification checklist, and the frequency of visible design hazards was tabulated. A total of 578 stairways were scanned in articles and advertisements, of which 78 (13.5%) were product advertisements. Sixty-one percent of the stairways had at least one visible design hazard including nearly half (47%) in product advertisements. The three most common hazards in stairways were inadequate handrails (161, 27.8%), excessive length of stairway flights (74, 12.8%), and low visual contrast on tread edges (73, 12.6%). The high prevalence of stairway design hazards in the professional literature indicates a need for improved professional education and media attention to safe stairway design.
Kim, Karen, and Steinfeld, Edward. "AN EVALUATION OF STAIRWAY DESIGNS FEATURED IN ARCHITECTURAL RECORD BETWEEN 2000 AND 2012" in International Journal of Architectural Research: ArchNet-IJAR [Online], Volume 10 Number 1.
Karen Kim, Edward Steinfeld