Access Board offers advice on the design of charging stations for electric vehicles

The US Access Board has released a technical assistance document to help design and build electric vehicle charging stations that are accessible and usable by people with disabilities. August 8, 2022



By Dan Hounsell, Editor-in-Chief

Electric vehicles have had a noticeable impact on institutional and commercial facilities.

The US Access Board has released a technical assistance document to help design and build electric vehicle (EV) charging stations that are accessible and usable by people with disabilities.

The ADA covers entities including state and local governments and public accommodations and commercial facilities. Standards issued under the Architectural Barriers Act (ABA) require accessibility for facilities designed, built, modified, or leased with federal funds. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and ABA Accessibility Standards include many requirements for electric vehicle charging stations, including provisions regarding access to sites, facilities, buildings and elements, as well as specific requirements for functional parts and accessible routes. Even in the absence of specific reference to electric vehicle charging stations in the ADA and ABA standards, regulated entities must still ensure that they are accessible and usable by persons with disabilities.

Some EV chargers also have user interfaces and payment systems that would be considered information and communication technology (ICT). Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act requires persons with disabilities to have access to and use ICTs provided by the federal government. The law applies to all federal agencies when they develop, purchase, maintain or use ICT. federal agencies must ensure that any ICT that is part of an EV charger is accessible to employees and members of the public with disabilities to the extent that it does not pose an “undue burden”.

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