Business Owners in Wilmington: Make Sure You Have ADA Compliant Handrails

If you own a business or commercial facility, you likely have so much going on that it’s easy to forget about the little things. That’s why we’re here to remind you to make sure to install custom handrails on all your building’s entrances and exits. Otherwise, you could be sued for discrimination! Here is everything you need to know when it comes to ADA compliance and handrails.

What is ADA Compliance?

ADA standards aren’t building code requirements; they are a part of civil rights legislation designed to give disabled Americans equal access to both job opportunities and physical spaces. The ADA, or American with Disabilities Act, is broken into three sections, or “Titles.”

Title I prohibits employers from discriminating against employees; Title II prohibits state entities, like schools and cities, from discrimination; and Title III requires all public facilities to be easily accessible to all persons. The term “public facility” includes hotels, gyms, restaurants, stores, hospitals, and pretty much everywhere else.

What Happens if I Violate the ADA?

If your business is found to be in violation of the ADA, the penalties are far from being a slap on the wrist. As of March 2014, organizations and businesses can be fined up to $75,000 for their first ADA violation, and up to $150,000 for subsequent offenses. Obviously, that’s a major hit for most businesses, and could be enough to cause any small business to go bankrupt. You can see why it’s crucial to make sure that your business has handrails and other accessibility measures!

ADA Rules Regarding Handrails 

 The ADA requires all commercial buildings and remodeled buildings in the U.S. to be outfitted with ADA-compliant handrails. In order to make the grade and receive ADA compliance certification, handrails must follow a number of strict guidelines. For instance:

  • The railing must be continuous and smooth
  • It must be located on both sides of stairways, ramps, etc.
  • It must be 34-36 inches high
  • The space between the handrail and the wall or any other obstruction must be 1.5 inches or more
  • It must not rotate in its fitting
  • The end of the handrail must either be rounded, or return smoothly into the floor, a wall, or a post.

Note that this is not a comprehensive list of rules regarding handrails. For a complete list of ADA handrail regulations, be sure to do your research, or consult a professional handrail installer who can advise you.

Get Commercial Handrail Installation in Cape Fear

To find the perfect ADA-compliant handrail, look for a model that is strong, long-lasting, versatile, and budget-friendly. It should also be installed by a reliable, trusted company with plenty of referrals—like us! Cape Fear Fence is proud to offer the best handrail installation services in Wilmington, Leland, and the nearby areas. Call us today to get commercial handrails for your stairs, ramps, porch, walkway, and trails.