Many public and private facilities strive to provide access for all individuals, including those that have disabilities requiring the use of a wheelchair. Whether you are required to offer accessibility or you simply choose to do so, you may find yourself populating outdoor seating areas with picnic tables for recreational use.
In this case, you'll have to include wheelchair accessible picnic tables, and not just any product will do.Here are just a few things you'll want to consider when choosing the right picnic tables.
The Americans with Disabilities Act(ADA) spells out rules and regulations related to making facilities accessible to those with disabilities, including the use of wheelchairs. In addition to providing ramps and making sure doorways and halls are wide enough to accommodate wheelchairs (among other building specifications), you may be required to provide picnic tables on the grounds that meet ADA requirements.
If this is the case, you need to make sure the wheelchair accessible picnic table you choose is compliant with ADA guidelines. Simply choosing a product labeled as handicap or wheelchair accessible may not be enough.
Whether you need to comply with ADA requirements or not, the guidelines provided by this organization do give you a place to start when it comes to making sure you select products that offer adequate space to accommodate the majority of wheelchair users. Clearance is especially important when ensuring that wheelchair users are able to make use of picnic tables.
Generally speaking, it is recommended that tables offer knee clearance of 27 inches high, 30 inches wide,and 11 inches deep for wheelchair users, as well as toe clearance of 9 incheshigh, 30 inches wide, and 17 inches deep. Further, there must be clear ground space of 30 inches by 48 inches for wheelchair seating, not to mention a proper pathway for wheelchairs to reach seating space.
Ample Seating and Selection
When planning for wheelchair accessible seating at picnic areas, picking the appropriate picnic tables means not only choosing tables that have spaces for wheelchairs (as well as seats for non-wheelchair users), but also ensuring that there is ample seating so that groups with both wheelchair and non-wheelchair users have options for seating.
You may want to choose tables that offer multiple spots for wheelchair users, instead of just a single spot. Or you might want to provide a variety of tables for different size groups, such as tables that accommodate a group of four, as well as those suitable for larger parties. This ensures that wheelchair users have many options for seating and there is less chance they may have to sit separately from part or all of their group.
When choosing wheelchair accessible picnic tables, it's important to keep usage in mind. Who will be using these picnic tables? An elementary school, for example, may want different products than an office structure or a retirement community.
The products you choose, including sizing and construction materials, should reflect the intended usage and properly accommodate the wheelchair and non-wheelchair users most likely to utilize picnic areas.
Picnic Furniture offers a wide range of ADA compliant wheelchair accessible picnic tables for your school, park, or public facility. If you have any questions on selecting the right model please call our expert staff today and we will be happy to assist.