Healthy Homes - Stairs
Health and safety tips
Prevent fall injuries:
- Install hand rails in stairways.
- Make sure there is good lighting along stairs. Use night lights.
- Keep stairs free of clutter and in good repair.
- Protect young children by using safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs.
- For child safety, spindles on stair rails should be no more than 3 1/2" apart. If children are under age 2, the spacing should be less than 2 3/8". For railing that cannot be easily modified, install banister guards or rail nets.
Use fluorescent or LED lighting to illuminate stairs. Fluorescent bulbs are four to six times more energy efficient compared to incandescent bulbs. Fluorescent bulbs usually last much longer than incandescent lamps. LED lights are both energy efficient and long lasting.
Each year, one in three adults, age 65 and older falls. Falls can cause moderate to severe injuries, such as hip fractures and head traumas, and can increase the risk of early death. For more information, visit CDC’s Home & Recreational Safety Webpage.