Applying the Forest Service Outdoor Recreation Accessibility Guidelines
Signs provide key information concerning the accessibility of programs and facilities. People often think of the International Symbol of Accessibility (ISA) (figure 68) as an all-purpose sign to be used any time an accessible feature is available, which is not necessarily true.
In accordance with ABAAS, section 216, ISA must be posted at only six places:
- At accessible parking spaces in parking lots with five
or more designated parking spaces.
- Sign van accessible parking spaces in these lots as
- Sign RV accessible parking spaces in these lots as
- Do not post ISA at parking spurs provided at
camping units or other individual accessible
- Sign van accessible parking spaces in these lots as such.
- At accessible loading zones.
- At accessible restrooms and bathing facilities.
- At the main entrance to a building, with an arrow
directing people to the closest accessible entrance, if
the main entrance is not accessible.
- On the door to an accessible area of refuge inside
- At an accessible means of egress out of a building.
Except for the requirement to post the VAN ACCESSIBLE plaque at van accessible spaces, no other descriptive words are required to be used with ISA. If words are used, use "accessible." Do not use "handicapped."
Where all constructed features and areas comply with the accessibility provisions, you may post ISA, but it is not required. Do not individually sign accessible sites with ISA because this can stigmatize and draw unwanted attention to the individuals using those sites.
When only some constructed features and areas comply with the accessibility provisions, people need to know whether they will be able to use a particular campsite or picnic area. This can be accomplished using several methods, depending on the type of campground or picnic area.
The Federal agency recreation reservation system (http://www.recreation.gov) contains accessibility information about campsites and picnic areas that are registered in the system, including which individual sites are accessible. When using this system to reserve a site, people are automatically notified if they are about to reserve an accessible site. ISA also can be used to identify individual accessible sites on the recreation site map on the Web site describing the recreation site. These are both good ways to provide accessibility information to recreationists with Internet access.
If some—but not all—campsites or picnic areas are accessible and recreationists choose their site when they arrive at the recreation area, provide accessibility information to recreationists as they enter the area. ISA can be used to identify the individual units that comply with the accessibility guidelines on the recreation site map at the entrance kiosk, fee station, bulletin board, or registration area. Post the following type of statement on the registration information sign: "Units 2, 4, 6, and 10 are accessible. If no one in your group needs an accessible site, please fill these units last." Forests that use this type of statement on the registration sign report that visitors generally have complied.
If some—but not all—campsites or picnic areas are accessible and the sites are assigned by a person onsite who can provide information about each unit, you don't have to post accessibility information. The accessible units should be assigned as requested by individuals. The accessible sites that are not assigned to persons with disabilities should be filled last, keeping them available in case they are needed. Do not ask people who request or reserve an accessible site to state or show any type of verification of their disability.
Their vehicles are also not required to display a license plate or placard indicating a disability. This site reservation and assignment process complies with the court-ordered process followed by hotels concerning their accessible rooms.
There is no legal requirement on federally managed lands for ISA signs to be blue and white, even at parking spaces. If ISA is used, post it on a vertical sign in accordance with ABAAS, section 703.7, in high-contrast colors with a nonglare finish. A cream or pale yellow ISA on a brown background complies with this requirement and blends into an outdoor setting.
If you want the local law enforcement agency to be able to issue tickets for illegal parking at accessible parking spaces in parking lots, display ISA in blue and white to comply with the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD), section 2B.39. Although their use is optional, the only approved colors for pavement markings designating accessible parking spaces are blue and white (MUTCD, section 3B.18).
If a sign or kiosk has materials to be handled, such as maps, brochures, fee envelopes, and so forth, design the sign or kiosk so that the materials are displayed within the standard accessible reach ranges in accordance with ABAAS, section 308, as explained in "Reach Ranges and Operability Requirements" of this guidebook. Provide clear floor or ground spaces of 30 by 48 inches (760 by 1,220 millimeters) to allow a forward or parallel approach.
Post the appropriate international symbols where various modes of alternative formats, communication, or adaptive equipment are available. Large print, open captioning, sign language interpreters, and so forth are each represented by a specific symbol (figures 69 through 77).
If you have questions about applying any of the above information, please contact your region's recreation accessibility coordinator. Current contact information is available at http://www.fs.fed.us/eng/toolbox/acc/documents/coord.htm#leaders.