Handicap Parking Signage Permit Requirements

If you are required to post handicap signage, then you need a permit. In all states, handicap signage is part of any parking lot improvement, renovation, or installation. It may seem like a small thing to install signs that direct handicap people to parking stalls. The reality is that the Americans with Disabilities Act has very specific rules and regulations about how handicap signage looks, its placement height, and where the placement occurs. In fact, there are rules and regulations that govern every parking stall in a parking lot. In this article, Transline Industries look at the rules and regulations for parking stalls in parking lots or garages.

Explore our comprehensive range of ADA-compliant signage and parking lot supplies here.

Handicap parking spaces

Rules for Handicapped Signage

There are three types of handicap signage placards that the Americans with Disability Act requires to be in place in all parking lots or garages. The first uses a van symbol. There is a difference between a handicap van parking stall and a handicap parking stall for a car. The van symbol’s purpose is to direct handicap drivers to the most appropriate handicap stall based on the type of vehicle that they are driving. The second and third placards are the standard H symbol or the international symbol that uses a wheelchair. To read more about the exact language of the ADA visit section 502.6 of the act.

Rules for the Height of Handicapped Signage

Sign height for van parking must be a minimum of 60 inches in height. The measurement begins from the finished surface of the parking lot or garage floor, and its measurement ends at the bottom of the sign. The sign must also contain the phrase “Van Accessible.” The entire purpose of the “Van Accessible” signage is to help handicapped van drivers find parking stalls that are wide enough for their van. There are other rules that require very specific dimensions for handicap van parking stalls, regular handicap parking stalls, and regular car parking stalls.

An aisle is required for all handicap van and handicap car parking stalls that is wide enough for wheelchair lifts to operate safely. All access aisles must comply by being 60 inches wide, and as long as the parking stall. The access aisles must all be marked though usually only with surface paint. It is also strongly encouraged by the American’s with Disability Act that the aisle that serves a handicap van parking stall be on the passenger side of the vehicle. The Act points out that most wheelchair lifts occur on the passenger side of vehicles. More information about the exact rules for aisle markings and sizing are found in the Act’s section 502.3.3 and the Advisory section 502.3.4.

Key Requirements

  1. Sign must be at least 60 inches high
  2. Most contain “Van Accessible”
  3. An aisle wide enough to operate lift safely – 60 inches wide
  4. Marked aisle

Rules for Vertical Clearance

Handicap stalls for vans must also indicate the clearance requirement if there is an overhang. Handicap van stalls must have a van clearance of 98 inches as a minimum. It is strongly suggested that signage for Van Clearance be posted at the entrance with a directional aid so that drivers can be fully informed.

As you can see, the rules that govern how handicap stalls and signage are complex. If you install a new parking lot, you must comply with the most current version of the Americans with Disability Act. If you improve a parking lot or garage, you must also make improvements to the standard of the most current version of the Act. This is why you need a permit, even for installing handicap signage. Your project will need an inspection to ensure that it complies with all levels of the Americans with Disability Act.

Key Requirements

  1. Must indicate overhang clearance with at least 98″ clearance

To get the help or supplies you need to set up your handicap signage, contact Transline. Our knowledgeable staff can help you with any questions you have.

Frequently Asked Questions

How high do handicapped parking signs need to be?
Handicapped parking signs must be at 60 inches tall (5 feet).

What are the requirements for handicap parking spaces?
Handicap parking spaces must be clearly marked with a sign that is at least 5 feet tall, contains “Van Accessible” and has an isle wide enough to operate a lift.

How should a handicap parking space be marked?
Handicap parking spaces should be marked with a standing sign as well as paint on the ground.

View our collection of handicapped parking signs here.

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