Complying with Australian Standards is an essential part of the product selection and installation process. It’s important that the installer is aware of the Australian Standards to ensure that a consistent layout is achieved.
Vision-impaired pedestrians rely on consistency for accurate interpretation of the cues provided by tactiles. What’s less understood about tactiles is the need for precision when it comes to placement, color, size, and quality. To maintain consistency, a number of factors need to be considered:
Tactiles need to be manufactured to precise specifications to achieve adequate prominence without causing a tripping hazard.
Tactiles must be installed with the correct spacing between each unit. Inconsistent spacing has the potential to cause misinterpretation which can lead to confusion, or worse – accidents.
Luminance contrast contributes to the efficacy of tactile indicators for visions impaired pedestrians. The reason for this is that a large percentage of vision impaired people still retain partial vision and can detect the contrast provided by suitably colored tactiles. When architects and specifiers select a color, it’s important to factor in the color of the substrate. Failure to consider the background color could result in insufficient contrast.
An essential consideration when selecting tactile indicators is the level of slip resistance provided. Tactiles are often placed at hazardous locations such as bus and rail platforms, escalators, top of stairs and pedestrian crossings. It’s essential that tactiles do not increase the chance slip and fall accidents, especially in wet conditions.
Due to the nature of their application, tactile indicators need to withstand harsh conditions including constant foot traffic, heavy rolling loads, extreme UV levels and other natural elements such as wind and rain. Choosing hard wearing, UV Stabilised Tactiles is essential to maintain appearance and functionality. Poor quality products suffer degradation over time. Worn surfaces and faded colors eventually render tactiles non-compliant.