Do I Need A Guard Rail On Exterior Ramp?


If a ramp run has a rise greater than 6 in (150 mm) or a horizontal projection greater than 72 in (1830 mm), then it shall have handrails on both sides. Handrails are not required on curb ramps or adjacent to seating in assembly areas.


A Guardrail is required along the open side of any walking surface, which include stairs, ramps, and landings, provided the drop is more than 30 inches within 36 inches from the edge. 2. The Guardrail height shall not be less than 36 inches above the walking surface.

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Frequently Asked Questions

recommends 1 foot for ramp for every one inch of rise.

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In most cases you need to have handrails on both sides, but there are a few ways to avoid handrails. The first way is to keep the rise of the ramp to no more than 6″. Ramps less than 6″ high do not require handrails. The second way is to keep the slope less than 1:20 or 5%.

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The third ramp (third from top) labeled "Vertical Guard Rail" has a series of vertical guard rails or pickets. The top of the handrail is shown as 34 – 38 inches (865 mm – 965 mm) above the ramp and landings (applies to all handrails on accessible ramps).

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A handrail serves a very different role: It is meant for purposeful use by an occupant while traversing an obstacle, such as a stairway or ramp. When a flight of stairs between two landings has four or more rises and when a ramp is steeper than a 1-in-12 slope, a handrail is required on at least one side.

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The handrail detail is the same as the first example with a bottom rail no more than 27 inches (305 mm) above the ramp and landings. A minimum of 36 inches (915 mm) is provided between handrails. Outdoor ramps and their approaches shall be designed so that water will not accumulate on walking surfaces.

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