An Old Bleacher Could Mean Breaking Rules & Safety

BROC U #16

Equipment Forever Ages, Old Bleachers Everywhere

Does your facility have an old bleacher that maybe has fallen out of safety or code compliance? Years ago, seating systems didn’t require end rails, aisles, intermediate steps or hand rails. Over time as we have learned to improve safety in our systems, one big item includes adding intermediate aisles to help make it easier and safer for your fans and students to unload from the bleachers.

Changes to Equipment are Needed as Building Codes Change

Intermediate steps are designed to comply with code requirements by providing an equal depth and height foot surface between rows. Intermediate steps include safety abrasive tread on all steps to eliminate slipping and falling. Hand rails are placed into permanent position to ensure safety always; adding permanent aisle rails not only ensures protection but the innovative design eliminates the need to individually set up each rail, maximizing labor savings. Safety end rails are required on open end telescopic seating systems, higher than two rows. Interkal offers the choices of self-storing or removable, which helps to eliminate any spectator jumping or falling off the side of the bleacher. Self-Storing end rails offer great convenience, they are strong, durable, and there is no labor required as they simply open and close with the system. Removable end rails can quickly be attached and detached.

At this point you would know whether you are code compliant or not. If you are not, these small additions can be a simple and a budget friendly way to help bring your older systems into present view. What do you need to know to get the correct information?

  1. Total Seat Count (Typically based on an 18” seat) Which can Be Determined From:
    1. Total Bank Length
    2. Total Number of Rows

This information will tell the number of aisles and ADA seating allocations needed. Based off the number of seats there are requirements that need met to make the system as safe as possible for your students and guests.

Budgets Like Options, Think Twice Before Replacing Bleachers

When full equipment replacement seems like the only option to bring the system up to code, it may be time to think twice. You can help extend the life of the system through some easy retro-fitting. Sometimes it is as simple as a one-day fix/retro-fit depending on the size of the scope of work. Being able to bring these bleachers up to code without replacing the entire system will help free up budget to help other pieces of the school while still ensuring safety and compliance inside your gym. As all schools and facilities have tight and highly scrutinized budgets, this is a spot that should not be overlooked.