November 23, 2007, Newsletter Issue #90: Having a Handicap Bathroom - Not Just Polite, It's the Law

Tip of the Week

For people running restaurants, there are many codes that you will want to keep your eye on because they can lead to big problems down the road. One code that stays out of the kitchen is the need to provide handicap access to your restrooms. Codes vary depending on where you operate so you will want to be sure to conform to the appropriate measures, but there are basics to the handicap bathroom that are pretty universal. Here is a basic handicap bathroom guide: You will need at least one stall in your bathroom that is wide enough to accommodate wheelchair access. Many of the handicaps need these chairs and therefore need these types of openings in a handicap bathroom. Also, you will need to install grab bars. These are metal rails that people can use to assist themselves in getting onto and off of the toilet. In a handicap bathroom, grab bars are a must. There are many other specific regulations that are far too long to list here. Look into what you need to do by contacting you state code officer and getting details.

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