Access Appraisals Ltd.
What is the recommended gradient for wheelchair ramps in the UK?
We quite often receive requests for wheelchair ramps from people who don’t really know how long the ramp should be.
Recommended gradient for portable wheelchair ramps in the UK?
As a general rule when using portable wheelchair ramps most ramp manufacturers recommend a gradient no steeper than 1:12 for independent use and 1:8 for assisted use over shorter distances.
A simple calculation for finding out ramp lengths is to multiple the height by the ratio.
i.e. if working on a 1:8 ratio multiply the height of step by 8 to give you the minimum length of ramp.
Note: always do your own risk assessment before deciding on ramp gradient as guidelines generally say a maximum gradient of 1:12 or 1:15 for public use.
See our full range of Portable Wheelchair Ramps »
Recommended gradient for permanent wheelchair ramps
Update: New Building Regulations from October 2015 – Access to and use of buildings: Approved Document M
Read more about Regulations regarding ramps here – Wheelchair Ramp Guidance and Regulations
The following table shows the minimum ramp length required to comply with current UK Building Regulations from the Approved Document M: access to and use of buildings, volume 2: buildings other than dwellings
Note: 10m is the maximum length a ramp should be before including a level resting platform of 1.5m minimum length.
This advice does not take in to consideration the Building Regulations on Wheelchair Ramps which can be found below.
Building Regulations Part M: Access and facilities for disabled people
Note: UK Building regulations are slightly different with regard Dwellings and other building, these recommendations are for “Buildings Other Than Dwellings”.
What is the Recommended gradient for wheelchair ramps
A wheelchair ramp will comply with Part M of Building Regulations if it;
- Has a non-slip surface.
- Is 1.5m wide with a minimum unobstructed width of 1.5m.
- Has a maximum individual flight of 10m
- Has a maximum gradient of 1:20 at 10m (500mm high)
- Has a maximum gradient of 1:15 at 5m (333mm high)
- Has a maximum gradient of 1:12 at 2m (166mm high)
- For goings between 2m and 10m it is acceptable to use a sliding scale i.e. 1:13 for 3m, 1:14 for 4m, 1:16 for 6m, etc.
- Has top and bottom landings no less than 1.2m and intermediate
- Landings of 1.8m every 10m.
- Has 100mm high raised kerbs to any open side of ramp or landings
- Has a continuous suitable handrail on each side.
- Has a maximum cross fall of 1:40
- Has a maximum slope on landings of 1:60
- Has a contrasting, landings, upstands and handrails to ramp surface.
Wheelchair Ramps FAQs Guidance on wheelchair ramps in the UK
We are often asked questions about wheelchair ramps
Below are some of those frequently asked questions
Are Access Appraisals Ltd wheelchair ramps DDA compliant?
The DDA has been replaced by the equality act, there are no set regulations for portable wheelchair ramps but wheelchair ramps can be used as an auxiliary aid when it is reasonable to do so.
Are Aerolight wheelchair ramps for commercial or domestic use?
The Aerolight range of wheelchair ramps are a superior quality ramp, they can be used for domestic or commercial use but the price reflects the needs of service providers where safety is paramount
Are Aerolight wheelchair ramps temporary or permanent?
Aerolight wheelchair ramps are portable ramps that are designed to be set up as and when required and should not be left out unattended.
Can wheelchair ramps be purchased Online?
Most of our wheelchair ramps can be purchased online but we strongly recommend you speak to us 1st to ensure you buy the correct ramp.
What is the best wheelchair ramp for a shop?
A lot depends on the location, if the shop is on the high street with a public pavement outside the best type of wheelchair ramp is one that folds away when not in use and is light and easy to set up. The Aerolight Xtra is favoured my most shop staff, service providers and small businesses who require portable wheelchair ramps.
What should the gradient be for a wheelchair ramp in the UK?
It depends on whether the wheelchair ramp has to comply to building regulations, if so it is anything from a 1:12 gradient to a 1:20 gradient depending on the height and purpose of the ramp to find out more read Part M of the building regulations.
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