How to Choose the Best Step Treads And Anti-Slip Ladder Rungs?

Amco High Vis Stairnosings

Step Treads, Stair nosings and anti-slip ladder rungs are critical in mining, marine, construction, and industries with major hazards. In this article, we’ll review the most significant factors to consider when choosing these products.

Anti Slip staircase nosing - AMCO
Figure 1 : Anti slip step treads and ladder rung caps


All objects have a light reflective value or LRV, which is the amount of light that reflects off their surface. LRV is essential in stair nosing and anti-slip ladder rungs as they assist individuals with visual impairments. While some people may not distinguish colours, they can usually determine dark and light. LRVs create a contrast between surfaces, allowing those with visual impairment to assess the area.

LRV rating scales from 0 to 100, depending on the amount of light that bounces off. Dark and matte surfaces absorb more light energy, and therefore, have lower LRV. Conversely, light and glossy surfaces reflect back more light energy, which means they have higher LRV.

In industrial settings with a higher risk profile, it is recommended highly-visual green and yellow stair nosings and ladder rungs. These include mines, shipping ports, and grain storage infrastructure. According to DAR workplace safety advisor Karina Wolfin,” The standard is to ensure that there’s a 30% difference in the light reflective values of the insert and the stair nosing or ladder rung.”

Slip Resistance

Figure 2: Anti slip testing for stair nosings

Gradus inserts are tested for slip-resistance, surface roughness, and chemical and bacterial resistance. The independent test that is used to determine the slip-resistant factor is called the pendulum test (see page 4 of this leaflet from Gradus for details).

Slip resistance on step treads is a crucial feature of stair nosings and ladder rungs. They must be able to provide sufficient traction to prevent accidents. The “pendulum test” is a method to determine the slip-resistant factor of any surface. If a material’s micro-roughness value is greater than 20 µm, it is classified as low risk.

Slip PotentialRz Value1PT Value1
High Slip Potentialbelow 10 µm0 – 24
Moderate Slip Potential0 – 20 µm25 – 35
Low Slip Potential20+ µm36+


The environment where you intend to install the step treads, stair nosing and ladder rung is a crucial factor.  Take note that specific settings require specific ratings. Choosing a nosing with an LRV that is too low for the condition to which it will be exposed can lead to damages or injuries. Deviating from safety guidelines can also put you in a complicated situation with the law. While a highly-visual green and yellow stair nosings and anti-slip ladder rungs may not fit with the aesthetics, remember that your priority is always safety.


When choosing anti slip step treads stair nosings and anti-slip ladder rungs always go back to the guidelines of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations 2017 (OHS Regulations). These guidelines aim to create safe workplaces and operations. If you’re unsure how to proceed, there are OHS inspectors who can guide you.

Amco Industries is an Australia-based manufacturer of premium grade steps, nosings, ladders, ladder rungs, and platforms for residential, commercial, and industrial applications. All of our products are resistant to a wide range of chemicals and solvents and are covered by warranty.

Wanting to enjoy the benefits of AMCO stair nosings and anti-slip ladder rungs?

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