Accessing Your Dock with Gangways

To access your dock, you may need a bridge or gangway to walk between your shoreline and dock depending on the shape of your land. A gangway provides a comfortable, stable walking platform to access your dock if you’re unable to access it directly from land. While docks can be accessed in other ways such as planks or ramps, gangways offer numerous benefits over other methods.

Before purchasing a gangway, there are several things to consider. Keep in mind that you can generally determine what you’ll need by seeing what the neighbors around you use. First, you need to determine the length and width of the gangway you need. When deciding the length, think of how far out you’ll want your dock to go from the shore. Longer gangways will help push your dock out further into the water, but local ordinances may prevent docks from going out too far into the water. The next thing to consider is your options for decking. You can choose wood, aluminum, or ThruFlow which will allow water to seep through if submerged.

EZ Dock Aluminum Gangway

Gangway vs Ramp

There are benefits to both gangways and ramps depending on what application they are needed for. A ramp is better suited for smaller distances. They are generally fixed into position, so they are better suited for bodies of water with low fluctuation. They also don’t come with handrails, so there won’t be a method of support for people that may require it.

Gangways are better than ramps in most ways. While a ramp may be more budget friendly, a gangway provides more stabilization and comfort. A gangway is good for any application, whether it is floating or stationary. The gangway will raise and lower with a floating dock as water levels fluctuate. They also provide extra support with a handrail, which means they’re also ADA compliant.

Other Uses for Gangways

Gangways are good in other applications besides docks. They can be use as elevated walking paths, or on trail systems, or in any application that needs a bridge to cross. With a gangway, you can gain new access to lands that you didn’t think was possible. From walking through a wet marshland to walking up along the tree tops, you’ll be able to fully utilize your land.

If you’re in need of a gangway, feel free to reach out to our team of experts to help determine the best solution for you. We will determine the best material for your gangway, along with the correct size.

ADA Accessibility: Getting More on Your Water

If you live near or own a public or community dock, you want everyone to be able to enjoy the waterfront. Getting out on the water is a great source of fun that is available to everyone. However, if a dock isn’t ADA compliant, or handicap accessible, then you’re excluding a lot of people that would like to enjoy your dock. Getting your dock up to ADA complaint code will truly allow for your entire community to be able to access the water.

Designing your Dock with ADA Compliant Guidelines

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) ensures that physically disabled people have the same rights as anyone. The bill provides guidelines and rules to ensure that all public government facilities provide a safe access for everyone. This even includes boating facilities such as fishing piers, kayak launches, and swim platforms have safety features to prevent slips and falls.

In 2002, the United States Access Board released updated guidelines for boating facilities. These guidelines allow for docks and fishing piers to become wheelchair accessible for fishing and other water activities. Included among these guidelines are certain requirements, such as a secure curb around the edge of a dock, and a smooth gangway ramp transition without any bumps. If you’d like to learn more about the exact guidelines, visit the Access Board’s website here.

Any size dock can be accommodated to ADA standards, no matter if it’s a large marina or a single slip dock. This allows for all public access spaces to be enjoyed by everyone – no matter where they are!

ADA Accessible Dock Solutions

With EZ Dock, designing a ADA complaint solution for your waterfront has never been easier. No matter what activity you have in mind for your waterfront, we can make it accessible to all! Whether it is fishing, kayaking, boating, or any other activity you do on the water, our team of seasoned experts can design a solution for you.

Public Fishing Piers

Given that fishing is one of the most popular activities on the water, many parks and public waterfronts make it a top priority to give everyone an area to spend hours catching fish. With EZ Dock, a fishing pier can be designed in any shape or size and can be accommodated to be ADA compliant. Our expert installation team will make your dock ADA by adding outer handrails and a gangway with a low slope and transition plate to ensure that nobody will fall in.

ADA Accessible Kayak Launches

Kayaking is another popular waterfront activity that is easily accessible to anyone. EZ Dock offers several kayak launch solutions, such as the EZ Launch system. With the EZ Launch system, kayakers will be able to easily get in and out of the water without ever having to worry about getting wet. The launch system allows for the kayak to be held in place and glide right on/off. The EZ Dock Transfer Bench and Sign system allows for a smooth transition from a wheelchair to the kayak. The transfer bench has two different seat sizes built in to accommodate different wheelchair sizes, making kayaking an easily accessible activity to enjoy on the water.

Community Boat Docks

While a non-compliant dock may not provide access for all to get on their boat, even large scale marinas can be brought up to ADA standards. With the modularity of EZ Dock, an ADA compliant boat dock can be designed to hold from just one boat, to however many you desire. By meeting all the ADA guidelines, such as dock curbing and a low sloped gangway with handrails, all EZ Dock systems can become ADA compliant.

Needing to Make Your Public Dock ADA Accessible?

If you’re looking to design a new dock solution for your public waterfront, look no further than EZ Dock! Our dock sections can be configured to any shape or size, and they’re built to last. You’ll never have any maintenance worries such as rotting, splintering, or rusting with our durable polyethylene dock sections. Our team of experts will work with you to design the best solution to give everyone access to the water. We’ve worked with several local governments, state parks, municipalities, and commercial designs. If you’re interested in getting more people out on you water, feel free to contact us today!