Creating an accessible environment
Environmental factors can have a significant impact on how sight loss affects a person’s life. Audible signals at traffic lights, tactile paving to indicate crossings, brightly coloured street furniture and audible announcements on public transport can enable a person with a vision impairment to go about their daily life safely and independently.
An access audit of your building may highlight certain aspects that make it difficult for a person with sight loss to find their way around independently. These include poor signage, bad lighting, failure to consider the importance of colour and lack of suitable markings around steps and stairs.
Low cost, simple adaptations can be made to make your building more accessible to all. These include:
- Marking glass doors and providing a handrail on staircases.
- Effective use of colour contrasting and tactile markings to highlight steps, edges and obstacles.
- Signs should be large, clear and well positioned. They should also be provided in tactile form, as well as in large print and braille.
- Where possible use contrasting colours on handrails, doorframes, door handles and edges of steps.
We can provide further advice and assistance on the most effective way to create an accessible environment.
Accessibility should be taken into account in the planning and design  stage of buildings and the external environment to ensure that physical barriers are broken down.
We are actively involved in access committees and advocacy groups to promote good practice regarding access to buildings, public spaces and the external environment.
Our staff work closely with local authorities, providing advice in relation to road crossings, tactile paving, street furniture and signage.
Public transport is often the only form of transport for people with sight loss so it is essential that everyone is able to travel safely and independently.
Our access advisor can provide information and advice on audible announcements on trains, buses and trams, the use of LCD displays at stations, on trains and trams and clear and effective signage.
Access advice and auditing
To find out more about the importance of accessibility or to arrange a meeting with our access advisor, contact us on LoCall 1850 33 43 53.