Universal Design Recommendations

Applying Universal Design to the Farm

  • Step-free entry areas with accessible approaches and remote control operated overhead doors.
  • Walking and working surfaces should accommodate the area being used.
  • Non-slip surfaces in potentially wet areas
  • Comfort / Fatigue mating at work areas for long periods of standing
  • At least 60” of clearance around large equipment in storage or service areas
  • Lever style door handles instead of twist knobs on all doors.
  • Large “D” or “L” style handles on barn doors, gates, and storage cabinets.
  • Windows that require minimal effort to open and close.
  • Flat rocker panel light switches instead of toggle switches, located 42” to 48” from ground level.
  • Additional lighting or task lighting in specific work areas.
  • Adjustable height shelving and cabinets for storage areas – no overhead storage that takes access from stairs or ladder. At least 36” between rows of shelving or storage bins.
  • Most frequently used items are 18” to 48” above the floor in storage areas, to least used items on higher shelves, and rolling or mobile items are on the floor.
  • Mobile tool storage is no less than 6” from the ground and no higher than 48” from ground level.
  • Utility carts to move parts, tools and miscellaneous items from the service area to other areas – storage, workbench, parts cleaner, welding station, etc.
  • Multi-height workbenches. At least one work surface area 28” above ground with a clear opening below where a user can work seated.
  • Switches and outlets at the front of workbenches opposite of the traditional location at the back of the bench on the wall.
  • Power tools that are pneumatic or battery operated. Hand tools/equipment with larger cushioned grips, ergonomic handles, and sizes are very visible or color coded.
  • Control levers or switches on equipment should have large color-coded / pictorial handles.
  • Free-standing equipment controls should be located on the front of the machine and at least 18” off the ground and no more than 48” above the ground.
  • Accessible sink area (with a lever style faucet) for clean up which can be used from a seated or standing position.
  • Utilize floor markings for travel areas and work areas to keep parts, debris, or equipment from blocking these areas.
  • Utilize floor markings at doorways to assist vision when pulling or backing in equipment to storage or service area.
  • Use organizational techniques such as visual labeling and easy open containers.

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