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How wheelchair ramps can be dangerous

On Behalf of | Sep 8, 2021 | Injuries |

Many people in the Garden City area have used handicapped ramps to access a building. Whether they are in a wheelchair, using a walker, a stroller, or just need additional assistance, a wheelchair ramp allows everyone to have equal access.

Wheelchair ramps are important in making buildings more accessible to all and are required in all new construction public projects in the U.S. However, improperly designed ramps or ramps that are not well-maintained can become a hazard. Some common dangers of wheelchair ramps include:

Ramp too steep

If a ramp is too steep it increases the likelihood that a person can tip backwards and requires more energy to climb, making them a danger to anyone who uses them. Wheelchair ramps are to be constructed with a minimum 1:12 ratio which means for every foot a ramp rises, it should be 12 feet long. Older ramps that do not follow this ratio can cause serious falls.

No handrails

In general, any ramp that is over 6 feet in length must have handrails. But private construction projects or residential ramps do not always have them. Without a handrail, an outdoor ramp when slippery or wet can be dangerous because a person would not be able to catch themselves when they begin to fall.

Wooden ramps

Wooden ramps, if not properly maintained, are often dangerous. They can rot over time and lead to someone falling through the ramp. They can be slippery after a rainfall, and they need to be coated in slip-resistant paint and if they are untreated are extremely slippery.

If a person has been injured because of a wheelchair ramp defect they may want to speak with a legal professional who is skilled in premises liability. An attorney can investigate the circumstances surrounding the injury and help determine what happened to cause it. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and other damages.