Hand rails – not just for Decoration! Think Safety First.
It is only human nature to seek something to hold on to when ascending or descending a stairway, or when standing somewhere higher up such as on a balcony. This is a security that we seek to feel more comfortable when not standing on “solid ground”.
Handrails and balustrades are simple and effective in providing people with a sense of security, and preventing accidents. While not everyone who climbs a flight of stairs will actually hold onto the handrails people like to know that they are there, and so they should be.
Nowadays we are spoilt for choice when it comes to balustrades and handrails. The height and style is usually determined buy the railings purpose, but balustrades and handrails should be at a height where people can comfortably reach them while standing. A circular shaped handrail is the best choice for safety as it can be easily and comfortably gripped. Thicker, round railings give maximum stability while allowing for comfortable grip and sliding while maneuvering up and down stairs. Square top railings may look more stylish to some but practicality should always be considered.
Stainless steel balustrades are more durable than other materials, as well as less maintenance. This makes them safer as there is no risk or the railing rotting and breaking as may happen with a wooden balustrade (especially in outdoor situations). Stainless steel balustrades are often more cost effective while still looking stylish. The fact that they are so durable, and non-corrosive make them perfect for high traffic areas or outdoors. Glass balustrades are another great choice when looking for aesthetically pleasing balustrades – they are safe without obstructing views.
Now, safety should come first, but this doesn’t mean that you have to cut out on the good looks. Balustrades and handrails can be both safe and aesthetically pleasing. Your choices are endless but be sure to consider where the railings will be used and what they will be used for, as well as how often they will be used to ensure that you choose the right balustrades for your building.