Builders and contractors have a duty to correctly install staircases that are fit for purpose. The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) Stair Scheme has launched a new Staircase Installation Guide to help fill the skills gap and focus on safe, quality installations for both domestic and general access staircases.
Getting stairs right first time and avoiding costly squeaks and even running the gauntlet of non-compliance is a major drain on productivity in the housebuilding and wider construction markets.
Poorly fitted stairs also present safety risks – they remain one of the most common areas for accidents in the UK with more than 800 recorded deaths and a staggering 300,000 visits to hospital per year in the UK attributed to slips, trips and falls on staircases. Accidents happen, but many could be avoided and some of these will be the result of not managing risks during construction works, when a part-finished or unguarded staircase is often used for access.
While members of the BWF Stair Scheme produce stairs that will support the necessary loads in both the flights and the balustrades, poor installation practices can cause the stability of the stair to be reduced, potentially leading to premature failure of components and ultimately the collapse of the stair.
The guide is designed to bridge the gap between manufacturers and installers to ensure that industry standards are met and best practice is followed to safely install timber staircases.
John Slaughter of the Home Builders Federation who has supported this guide stated: “At the HBF, we’re delighted to be supporting the British Woodworking Federation in developing this essential guidance.
"Working more effectively with the supply chain is critical to improving productivity and quality in the home building sector and this kind of collaboration between manufacturers and our members is a great example of how this can be done effectively. The BWF Stair Scheme and the quality information that is produced from this group is a very welcome support to our industry and members.”
For more information or to download a copy of the guide, visit BWF Stair Scheme Installation Guide.