Facilities for Disabled Persons

The Facilities for Disabled People

in our Public Buildings are Important

Ramps for disabled persons to gain access to public buildings is very important
Ramps for disabled persons to gain access to public buildings are very important

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  1. Samantha Rouche


    I’m an architecture masters student at UKZN and am lookign to get hold of the national building regs. Is this possible?


  2. The legislation and its amendments is available via this web site for free download. Go to Links & Downloads. But I think you are wanting a copy of the Deemed to Satisfy “rules” that are published by the SABS. You can purchase via their web site or directly from them. Their Durban tel number is 031-203 2900. You’d probably be better off going to their offices. Go to their library and ask to see SANS 10400. Each section is published separately and has a different price tag. The public is allowed to read the documents in the library, and if you want to make notes, take a laptop and work there. I have done this many times in the Cape Town branch. They are incredibly helpful.

  3. good-day

    I am a student studying my masters in Architecture. I am currently researching on facilities required for disabled people. Is it possible for me to receive a presentation regarding the facilities for disabled people. i am highly intrested in the regulations required.

    kind regards
    aslam majam

  4. Stef Potgieter

    Does the act also state that all buildings must be fitted with a lift, and what about older buildings?

  5. Hi Aslam,
    I suggest that you contact the SABS in your area directly and go to the nearest office. They are very helpful and you can view the regulations in their library and make notes. I understand they have a special price for students who need to purchase regulations for their studies. Their contact details are on our SABS-Contact page.

  6. Hi Stef,
    You have given very little information for us to give you any advice. I suggest that you contact your Local Council offices and speak to someone in the Building Planning Department and they will be able to help you.

  7. Please could you tell me where to find this information. Your site
    does not even mention pavements or walkways.
    I presume that developers who build retirement villages are required
    to make facilities for disabled persons e.g. humps on roads where
    there is no pavement to drive mobility scooters on, footpaths in
    garden areas = width? Should surely be wide enough for two mobility
    scooters to pass each other. Disabled toilets in Buildings in the
    retirement villages.

  8. Rosemary, Our site has a page for each and every one of the topics (or Parts as they are called in SANS 10400) that fall under the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act. This includes our section on Facilities for Disabled Persons. The thing is that the NBR focus on construction of buildings. There are many more Standards that relate to pavements and walkways. As an exercise I did a search on the SABS web site for:
    1. Pavement
    There were 15 matches, all of which relate to materials and techniques that should be used for construction.
    2. Walkway
    There were two matches, one relating to design and the other to the safer of machinery used when working on walkways.
    So on a site that focuses on published building standards, there would be absolutely no point in having a section on pavements and/or walkways.
    CLICK HERE for some more information on the legislation about facilities for disabled people (SANS 10400).
    I have also looked more closely at SANS 10400-S: Facilities for persons with disabilities.
    1. My search for “pavement” didn’t reveal much other than: “The recommended surface between a pavement and roadway is a ramp fitted with tactile guidance surface indicators. This provides a safe and trafficable surface for wheelchair users, and a detectable surface to indicate to persons with visual impairments that they are leaving a pedestrian footpath and entering a traffic roadway”.
    2. My search for “walkway” told me
    a) that a ramp is an “internal or external walkway with a slope between 1:20 and 1:12, in the direction of travel”
    There is also a regulation that states that the maximum camber on walkways and ramps may not be more than 1:50
    b) “Windows and doors shall not open across a walkway, corridor, stair or ramp. Doorstops shall be so positioned that any door will open to its maximum, and that they will not create a hazard.”

    I also did a search for “disabled” on the SABS and there is ONE useful-looking Standard that comes up. ISO/TR 9527:1994 Building construction — Needs of disabled people in buildings — Design guidelines
    This is an International Standard and it sells for R881.60. I don’t have a copy. Chances are you might find the information you need here – and you will be able to access it free if you go to an SABS library. However, it does state “in buildings” so may not cover pavements and walkways! I really don’t know.
    Your local authority will probably also have bylaws that apply. So give them a call. In fact I think they are probably your best bet!

  9. Hi .. I am interested in developing a property and converting from residential to mixed use. I would like some info and advice as to what I need to do I was told that as the area in which the property is in already has business use rights if I build for 100 m2 I would not need to apply for rezoning. The other thing is as a 1st time builder/developer would I be safer building it owner build or getting a contractor? The problem I hav is keeping costs down … Also is there any association or some such that would help me with development finance as I am regarded as disabled and do no currently hav any work or income hence the need to develope the property so that I could either rent out or start my own business there ??any and all advice would b appreciated. Many thanks . Zay

  10. H Zay, The zoning regulations are very different in every municipality and zone, so your local council will be the only ones that can answer your zoning question. As for registering as an owner builder the restrictions on owner builders is that you may not sell the property for a period of 5 years after construction.

  11. Hi Penny, can one motivate not to make provision for the physically handicapped? It sounds terrible but the senario is that the buiding in question accommodates seasonal fruit pickers during the 3 month picking season on a fruit farm. The very nature of the job requires the picker to climb a ladder in order to pick fruit thus rendering the disabled facilities redundant.

  12. Good day

    I’m working in the compliance department of my firm and was wondering what is the regulations regarding the evacuation of physically impaired employees.
    Currently our physically impaired employees have to make use of the service lift during an emergency which is concerning to me. As this can take them anything up to minutes to exit the building


  13. Evacuation as such is not covered by the NBR. I’m not sure what to suggest.

  14. Yes Simon you probably can, for the very reasons you give. The buildings that don’t automatically require facilities for disabled people are mainly those that are classified for “high risk” use of various kinds. Also H1 (“hotels” where people rent furnished rooms) don’t require them if there are less than 25 bedrooms. Or H3 without a lift – which are residences with two or more dwelling units on a single site.

  15. Is it the responsibility of the Owner of a building, or the responsibility of the Company who’s renting the building, to provide a public toilet for the workers?

  16. Normally the owner because the owner will have to submit plans etc. Unless there is something to the contrary in your lease agreement. Note too that there must be a certain number of toilets per workers.

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