American banks have become easy targets for Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) lawsuits, largely due to accessibility issues with Automated Teller Machines (ATMs). Because these machines are easy to spot and quickly check for compliance, any place they are found – truck stops and convenience stores especially – is at-risk for ADA litigation.
Often, ATMs do not meet the requirements for audible instructions and Braille.
Section 707.5 of the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design lays out that ATMs are required to provide voice guidance features accessible through audio jacks or telephone handset. They must also be easily discoverable for users with vision impairments.
To address the issue of privacy, section 707.4 states that the visually impaired, people with a short stature, or those that are wheelchair bound are not always able to easily block the ATM screens with their bodies. In order to prevent others from seeing their Personal Identification Numbers or other private information, ATMs need to offer a voice guidance system and have the screen go blank.
Section 707.8 deals with requirements for Braille instructions on ATMs. The ADA requires that Braille be a certain size, and must include instructions for speech controls.
In section 707.6, the ADA requires there be at least one “tactilely discernible” input control for each function. The surfaces of the keys that are not on the active display screen must also be raised above the surrounding surfaces.
There are 2 allowed arrangements for numeric keys: 12-key ascending or 12-key descending telephone keypad layout (As seen below).
The function keys (Enter, Cancel, Clear, etc…) should visually contrast from the background surfaces and should have tactile symbols to distinguish them from other keys.
If you have an ATM that does not meet these guidelines, it’s time for a new machine. Contact your ATM vendor and report the issue, and get a new, compliant machine. If it’s a bank owned ATM, then contact the bank ─ in writing – to address the ADA issues with the ATM. A written record is a valuable thing to have on your side in case of litigation — with written evidence, you can prove a pattern and practice of ADA compliance.
Brad Gaskins has 30 years experience in the practice of architecture and a comprehensive understanding of professional practice nationwide. Brad brings a unique and valuable perspective to The McIntosh Group’s practice and clients, with a specific expertise in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and national building codes. Brad has gained recognition as an expert witness for clients with ADA compliance complaints. He represents NACS, The Association for Convenience and Fuel Retailing, as a full voting member on the International Code Council (ICC), American National Standards Institute (ANSI) A117.1, Consensus Committee on Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities. His objective is to share, with the committee for their deliberations, the potential impact of the standards on the convenience store and truckstop industry.
This post was originally created for the National Association of Truck Stop Owners (NATSO). Read the original post at: http://www.natso.com/blog/atms-without-operating-audible-instructions-and-no-braille-instructions-provided#sthash.dF6oOfX0.dpuf