How to Mark the Edge of Step Treads

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Visible stair treads are safer for climbing.

Marking the edges of stairs so they are clearly visible can help avoid injuries and reduce safety hazards on stairs. Especially in emergency situations where fire, smoke and panic may be present, a stairway with brightly colored, reflective or photo-luminescent edges on the treads will be far more visible and could help avert tragedy. Marked stair edges also help the visually impaired.

Step 1

Buy a roll of reflective tape. Many sizes and styles of this product are available. Find something that is durable, brightly colored and made for commercial use.

Step 2

Cut strips of tape that are equal in length to the width of the stairs.

Step 3

Apply a strip of tape to the vertical edge of each stair tread. If the tape has an adhesive backing, apply it using the adhesive and staple it on for added security.

Step 4

Apply another strip to the leading edge of the horizontal step, next to the vertical strip of tape, for added visibility. Since people will be walking on this horizontal strip, it should have a finish that isn't shiny or slippery. Add to the safety of the step by applying an adhesive abrasive strip next to the safety strip to improve the anti-slip properties of the step.