Elevators are a main mean of transportation throughout every industry. Making sure they are ADA compliant is important in commercial, industrial, food processing, and educational settings among others. Although the Americans with Disabilities Act is civil rights act not a building code, building owners and managers are faced with new responsibilities for keeping workers, pedestrians and tenants safe. In the article by John Mundt, Jr. entitled “Elevators and the ADA; It’s not all that Complicated” he talks about what the ADA has to say on compliant elevators.
A summary of a few of the requirement for ADA compliant elevators are as follows:
1.) Elevators should be on an accessible route.
2.) Elevator operation should be automatic and should contain a self-leveling feature.
3.) Call buttons must be of a certain size, centered and positioned at a certain distance from the floor.
4.) Visual and audible signals must be provided showing which car is answering a call.
5.) Braille characters must be provided.
6.) Doors should open and close automatically, they should re-open if an obstruction is in the way.
7.) Doors should remain open for a minimum of 3 seconds.
8.) There must be enough room within the car for a wheel chair to enter, maneuver and reach the door controls.
9.) Floor surfaces must be firm, stable and slip resistant.
10.) Emergency communication needs to exist between the elevator and an outside point. It shall not require voice command.
While ADA compliance within the elevator is important, the flooring within and on the threshold should also be safe. Carpet is generally used for commercial and residential elevators and metal is often used in freight elevators. SlipNOT® provides slip resistant flooring products that surpass ADA compliant recommendations. Generally 1/8” aluminum or stainless steel slip resistant flooring is used within these elevators. SlipNOT® stainless steel plate has also been used as safety thresholds for ANZ Bank in New York keeping elevator users safe while entering and exiting the elevator.
Mundt, John F Jr. “Elevators and the ADA; It’s not all that Complicated” www.sterlingelevators.com May 3, 2012.