Railing's been there since the house was first built (70's). It is so unsafe, there is enough room for a skinny person or a child to go through while falling in the stairs. We like it though, spiral staircases are huge space savers.
My favorite spiral staircase story:
friend got a commission to build an entertainment center out of nice wood for a retired builder in the area. They gave him keys to the house and a photo of the wall across from their bed with the location marked so he could install it in their bedroom while they were at their island home for the winter. He called to ask for help getting it there, as he was a one-person cabinet shop.
I met him at the address and we go inside to see how we’d have to maneuver it upstairs. What do we see? Two spiral staircases are the only access to the upstairs! He starts figuring out how much he’ll have to disassemble the cabinet to fit the parts upstairs through that minimal, helical access. Meanwhile I look out the French doors of the bedroom to the second floor balcony to see a mature Ulmus Americana right over the back of the house.
I said, “ Richard, give me half an hour and I can make it fit; be right back!”. I went and got ropes, a block, and additional moving blankets. We trussed it up, set the block from the ground, and lifted it up and over the balcony railing. Got it inside, scribed it to fit the wall, set it in place, secured it, and wired up their tv and vcr.