Ramp Handrails - Vertical

*Under Development*

Handrail Height: 34”-38” | 86.4-96.5 cm above ramp surface
Handrail Extensions (Landings): 12” | 30.5 cm
Clear Width (Minimum): 36” | 91.4 cm between closest element (handrail or curb)
Vertical Balustrade Spacing: Prevents 4” | 10.2 cm diameter sphere

Vertical ramp guardrails are common safety systems used for accessible ramps that combine required handrails with a guardrail made up of a series of vertical balustrades. Vertical guardrails must double as both an assistive handrail and a guardrail that prevents users from accessing the edge of the ramp. For edge protection, vertical guardrails are made up of a balustrades that must be spaced to continuously prevent the passage of a 4” | 10.2 cm diameter sphere.

Handrails along both sides of a ramp are required on any ramp system with a rise greater than 6” | 15.2 cm or a horizontal run greater than 72” | 182.9 cm. The top grippable surface of any ramp handrail must be set at a height between 34”-38” | 86.4-96.5 cm above the ramp surface and a minimum clear width of 36” | 91.4 cm must be provided between handrails. In situations where a handrail is not continuous, handrails must extend at least another 12” | 30.5 cm parallel to the flat surface of the ramp landing. Inner handrails on a switchback or turned ramp must always be continuous. The ends of any handrail should be rounded or returned smoothly to the floor, wall, or post.

Elevation and section drawings with dimensions of an ADA ramp with vertical guardrails

Vertical ramp guardrails are common safety systems used for accessible ramps that combine required handrails with a guardrail made up of a series of vertical balustrades. Vertical guardrails must double as both an assistive handrail and a guardrail that prevents users from accessing the edge of the ramp. For edge protection, vertical guardrails are made up of a balustrades that must be spaced to continuously prevent the passage of a 4” | 10.2 cm diameter sphere.

Handrails along both sides of a ramp are required on any ramp system with a rise greater than 6” | 15.2 cm or a horizontal run greater than 72” | 182.9 cm. The top grippable surface of any ramp handrail must be set at a height between 34”-38” | 86.4-96.5 cm above the ramp surface and a minimum clear width of 36” | 91.4 cm must be provided between handrails. In situations where a handrail is not continuous, handrails must extend at least another 12” | 30.5 cm parallel to the flat surface of the ramp landing. Inner handrails on a switchback or turned ramp must always be continuous. The ends of any handrail should be rounded or returned smoothly to the floor, wall, or post.

Drawings include:
Ramp Guardrails - Vertical Handrails

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Common Questions
What is the maximum spacing of a vertical balustrade for a railing?
Vertical balustrades must be spaced to prevent the passage of a 4” | 10.2 cm diameter sphere.
What is the amount of edge protection required along a ramp?
To prevent users from slipping from the ramp edge, a continuous 4” | 10.2 cm high curb, lower guardrail, or vertical balustrade system must be used.
What is the height of a ramp handrail?
Ramp handrails should have their top surfaces set between 34”-38” | 86.4-96.5 cm above the ramp surface.