What Are Tactiles?


What are Tactiles? By definition, tactiles are any surface marking applied to a flat surface by non-drip paint techniques. Tactic is also the scientific term for a coloured paint application and it is commonly used for pavement markings, road surfaces and for architectural and ornamental applications. This means that if you are wondering what a Tactile is or what a Tactic is then the chances are you are not able to see them on the pavement or on a railway line – they are usually on walls, fences and buildings in high-rise buildings etc.

What are Tactiles used for?

For public places like parks and council buildings, where there is limited space and people with visual impairment have to move around, there is a need for tactile indicators to alert people to their surroundings. These could be signs, pavement markings or planters. Some cities like Boston, Massachusetts have laws which state that you must use non-drip paints for planters and paths. So, if you are considering retro-fitting an existing pavement or railings with a Tactic or other tactile indicator then you must take this into consideration as there are regulations about this in the UK.

What do Tactic and Tactiles mean? A Tactic is defined as a marked perimeter or border used to warn pedestrians of danger or additional traffic on a pavement or trail. They are generally marked by raised shapes (usually in the colour black) and they are applied to a surface with a texture (such as concrete, gravel or stone). The tactile indicator used for a Tactic is the raised textured surface and the distance from this is determined by the number of pedestrians and vehicle passing the marker over that span of the path.

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