Owning a business means you’ve got a lot on your plate. There’s only so much you can handle at once.
Is this one of your non-negotiable responsibilities? Make sure you adhere to the Americans with Disabilities Act. It covers many issues, but one of the essential addresses is accessible signage.
The problem? ADA signage requirements are easy to misinterpret.
We know how tricky ADA-compliant signs can be to understand, so we’ve created this guide to help you out. Please keep reading for our top common ADA sign mistakes and how to avoid them.
1. Failing to Provide Visual Cues or Symbols
It can make a sign complex or confusing for those with certain types of disabilities to understand, as they rely on visual cues to interpret information. To help avoid this mistake, make sure to include images or symbols on signs. Characters help to provide visual cues and can inform, or remind, viewers of the intended purpose of a sign.
2. Not Using the Correct Font
Using overly complicated fonts can make sign text hard to read and lead to confusion. Signs that do not meet the standards suggested by the ADA can lead to costly penalties.
The sizes and font styles suggested by the ADA can make all the difference regarding readability. For example, using a sans-serif font makes it easier for people with poor eyesight to understand.
3. Lacking the Proper Contrast
If signs don’t have sufficient contrast, it can make it harder for individuals with low vision or color blindness to be able to read the signs. The distinction must be at least 70%, so ADA signs’ background colors should be twice as dark as the text or symbols. Also, characters must be either white or black, never both simultaneously.
4. Ignoring to Provide Braille Translations
Failing to provide Braille translations makes it difficult for the visually impaired to access information such as directions, warning signs, and other essential messages. It would help if you implemented Braille translations whenever possible to avoid this ADA compliance in signage mistake. Ideally, Braille should be placed below or adjacent to the English text and accompanied by a tactile drawing if necessary.
5. Incorrect Minimum Letter Heights
ADA sign specifications should be accessible signage to meet specific letter height requirements, measuring between 5/8″ to 2″. Letter heights, any smaller or larger than this, can be challenging to read for individuals with visual disabilities or from a distance.
It is essential to make sure signage includes the proper letter heights. There are many online calculators available that can help determine the best letter size for a given space.
Avoid These Common ADA Sign Mistakes Today
Businesses should take a proactive approach to avoid common ADA sign mistakes. Companies should review requirements and ask for advice from a compliance expert when needed.
Moreover, if you are ever in doubt about the proper wording when creating an ADA sign, use the Americans with Disabilities Act Standards for Accessible Design as a reference. Make sure to check the accuracy of your signature to ensure compliance and understand the impact they can have!
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