Americans with Disabilities Act

  December 9, 2008

Hello, this is Dan Hounsell, editor of Maintenance Solutions magazine. Today’s topic is the Americans with Disabilities Act. Restrooms often receive the lion’s share of organizations’ attention in efforts to ensure facility accessibility of facilities. But before visitors ever get to a building’s restrooms, they often are confronted by challenges related to other facility components. Take doors, for example. Many facilities have multiple entrances and multiple doors at an entrance, often including revolving doors. ADA does have a number of requirements for exterior doors, so managers need to consider a number of issues when evaluating the accessibility of these components. For example, if a facility has multiple entrances and the main entrance is not accessible, consider installing directional signage, using the international symbol of accessibility, to the accessible entrance, if one exists. If the entrance has revolving doors and hinged doors, place the international symbol of accessibility at the hinged door, confirming that the revolving doors are not accessible. Finally, if exterior doors are difficult to operate, consider installing a low-power operator on the hinged door. These operators have become much more cost-effective in recent years and hold up well. But be aware that many visitors, from sales people and people pulling carts to parents pushing strollers, also will use these doors, which can increase wear and tear on the operators. aces


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