The Ontario Building Code | Handrails
(1) A stairway shall have a handrail on at least one side, and if 1 100 mm or more in width, shall have handrails on both sides.
(2) If the required width of a ramp or flight of stairs is more than 2 200 mm, one or more intermediate handrails continuous between landings shall be provided, and located so that there will be not more than 1 650 mm between handrails.
(3) handrails shall be continuously graspable along their entire length and shall have,
(a) a circular cross-section with an outside diameter not less than 30 mm and not more than 43 mm, or
(b) any non-circular shape with a graspable portion that has a perimeter not less than 100 mm and not more than 125 mm and whose largest cross-sectional dimension is not more than 45 mm.
(4) The height of handrails on stairs and ramps shall be measured vertically from the top of the handrail to,
(a) a straight line drawn tangent to the tread nosings of the stair served by the handrail, or
(b) the surface of the ramp, floor or landing served by the handrail.
(5) Except as provided by Sentences (6) and (7), the height of handrails on stairs and ramps shall be,
(a) not less than 865 mm, and
(b) not more than 965 mm.
(6) handrails installed in addition to required handrails need not comply with Sentence (5).
(7) Where guards are required, handrails required on landings shall be not more than 1 070 mm in height.
(8) Except as required by Sentence (14) and except where interrupted by doorway ="http://thehandyforce.com/doors/" title ="Toronto Door installer">doorways or newels at changes in direction, at least one handrail shall be continuous throughout the length of a stairway or ramp, including landings.
(9) handrails shall be terminated in a manner that will not obstruct pedestrian travel or create a hazard.
(10) At least one handrail shall,
(a) in the case of a stair,
(i) extend horizontally at the required height, not less than 300 mm beyond the top riser, and
(ii) continue to slope for a depth of one tread beyond the bottom riser followed by a 300 mm horizontal extension, and
(b) in the case of a ramp, extend horizontally at the required height, not less than 300 mm beyond the top and bottom edges of the incline.
(11) The clearance between a handrail and any surface behind it shall be not less than 50 mm.
(12) handrails and their supports shall be designed and constructed to withstand the loading values obtained from the nonconcurrent application of,
(a) a concentrated load not less than 0.9 kN applied at any point and in any direction for all handrails, and
(b) a uniform load not less than 0.7 kN/m applied in any direction to handrails not located within dwelling units.
(13) A ramp shall have handrails on both sides.
(14) In a long-term care home and a Group B, Division 3 occupancy, a continuous handrail shall be provided on both sides of a stairway throughout the length of the stairway, including landings, except where a handrail is interrupted by doorway ="http://thehandyforce.com/doors/" title ="Toronto Door installer">doorways or newels at changes in direction.
Note: On July 1, 2017, Sentence 188.8.131.52.(14) of Division B of the Regulation is amended by striking out "In a long-term care home and a Group B, Division 3 occupancy" at the beginning and substituting "In a long-term care home, a Group B, Division 3 occupancy and a retirement home". (See: O. Reg. 139/17, s. 42)