Sign & Digital Graphics

November '12

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Conforming to ADA Regulations Staying current is the key BY AMANDA MCGROR Y- D I XON Amanda McGrory- Dixon is a Denver-based freelance writer. She can be contacted at www. ollowing recent regulation modifi- cations that went into effect March 15, compliance signage laws have changed under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines. With these new changes, sign shops must ensure they are updated on the latest regulations to avoid any financial penalties. But even before the new regulations were passed, sign shops sometimes struggled with ADA compliance issues, and considering what's at stake for both the sign shop and its customers, it's important to stay on top of the latest requirements. In many cases, sign shops are sim- F ply unfamiliar with ADA compliance regulations, which is why they struggle, says Dave Welch, marketing coordina- tor at Gemini Incorporated, a supplier of dimensional letters and plaques in Cannon Falls, Minn. This is especially challenging among the sign shops that do little ADA work because while some regulations are specific, others tend to be vague, leaving it up to interpretation. Welch believes those sign shops that struggle with ADA should be more proac- tive in determining whether their signs meet the regulations. Often sign shops take an ADA job but fail to consult with other collaborators on the project. But by seeking out feedback or consultation, they can avoid any compliance issues that might go wrong. "If they get artwork from a company, In many cases, sign shops need to be more proactive in determining whether their signs are compliant. (Photo courtesy Gravograph) maybe a question to ask them is if this is up to ADA standards," Welch says. "At least it's back on their customer if there's a problem, so they're not on the hook if something goes wrong with it in the end." To ensure compliance, a sign shop should consider designating a team member as the resident ADA expert, says Anthony Harris, business development manager of Gravograph, a provider in the engraving and permanent marking 78 • November 2012 • SIGN & DIGITAL GRAPHICS ARCHITECTURAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL (Photo courtesy Gravograph) (Photo courtesy of

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