Most people assume that the only crucial circulation requirement for doorways is the doorway width – or also known as the clear opening width. In fact there are actually four (4) crucial circulation space requirements at doorways.
- Latch side
- Hinge side
To demonstrate these doorway circulation space requirements, as prescribed in AS1428.1 – 2009 Clause 13, we’ve highlighted them in the below images.
2. Latch Side
3. Hinge Side
Now that we’ve established what the clearances are, the next component of understanding disability access requirements for doorways is – “what are the actual measurements required to be.”
To answer this – it depends or in other words, it’s effected by three (3) factors.
- The direction the door leaf swings. e.g. towards or away from the user; and
- The direction the doorway of approached e.g. front on or from the latch side of the doorway; and
- The clear width dimension.
The reason these factors influence the measurements is because different manoeuvring of mobility devices is required for different approaches etc. It is to be noted that the doorway circulation space requirements have been based upon the 90th percentile wheelchair footprint and are predominantly, not solely, for the provision of increasing the usability of doorways for people who use mobility devices such as wheelchairs.
The below figures show the different circulation spaces required for a door leaf that swings toward the user. (Not to scale)
The below figures show the different circulation spaces required for a door leaf that swings away from the user. (Not to scale)
As can be seen in the above, the requirements that are actually needed for any particular doorway can be quite complex. When auditing plans and / or undertaking onsite disability access audits, the most common issues we identify have to do with doorway circulation space requirements, effectively breaches against the AS1428.1 – 2009 Clause 13 doorway requirements.
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