The requirements for ADA handrails and guardrails have changed so many times over the years that even the most experienced tradesmen have a hard time keeping up with the minimums, maximums, tolerance, or no tolerances.
All handrails installed along walking surfaces, ramps, and stairs must comply with the appropriate ADA guidelines for the specific situation. In general, handrails must be installed on ramps with a rise greater than 6 inches. Walking surfaces with a slope less than 1:20 do not require handrails, but if provided they must meet the appropriate requirements. Handrails should be provided on both sides of stairs and ramps. It is important to make sure that the appropriate height and clearance are used for the handrails where installed.
Being involved in ADA design and construction has given me the opportunity to help a lot of business owners and commercial property owners prevent costly ADA compliant lawsuits.
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