DTAC Pty Ltd is one company committed to ensuring people who are blind or vision impaired can negotiate changing environments in a dignified manner.
DTAC Tactile Indicators are a series of organised raised dots on pedestrian surfaces that are felt under foot or by cane. The raised surface alerts the vision impaired as to where they are and any changes in walkways such as steps, ramps or other hazards
in the built environment.
The Tactile Indicators, or tactile ground surface indicators as they are sometimes called, are directly fixed to any new or existing stable surface or substrate without excavation or disruption to either the design or building process. This is achieved through a unique retrofitting process that achieves a chemical and mechanical bonding in a matter of hours.
According to Dean Homicki, Managing Director of DTAC Pty Ltd, the product development took twelve months and included a massive research and testing regime and the development of a detailed business plan.
“DTAC Pty Ltd and its products is the first separate commercial venture to be realised through DAHDAH Pty Ltd, our parent industrial design company,” said Homicki.
“The business was launched once we had secured a major project which, in turn, secured the required capital to safely commercialise the DTAC products.”
Forward planning by regulatory bodies such as The Building Code of Australia (BCA), Australian and New Zealand Standards (AS/NZS) and The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), have determined a Code of Practice for the inclusion of Tactile Indicators to assist the criteria in all new built environments.
According to the Australian and New Zealand Standards AS/NZS 1428:2 (2002) Tactile Indicators are required to be installed close to an approaching hazard or change of direction along a path of travel, such as a footpath, passageway, walkway, ramp, stairs, landing or similar.
Dean Homicki admits this latest venture for DAHDAH is a change in direction. For the last seven years the company has designed and manufactured commercial jewellery ranges for Myer Grace Brothers Stores, as well as some office wares and lighting for David Jones and high end giftware stores. Other projects have involved custom furniture and devices for architects and private clients in Australia.
Homicki brings his love of jewellery design to his products adding good looks to practicality.
DTAC products work in conjunction with 3M adhesive and preparatory products, which has led to earlier market acceptance and confidence, according to Homicki.
“The relationship with 3M also means DTAC can guarantee installation of the products where none of our competitors appear to be doing so.
“Through the various mechanical mounting designs – patents pending – the 3M products assist in creating a chemical bond with the DTAC mounting devices. DTACs are available in a variety of finishes and can affix to any stable surface and substrate including timber, concrete, vinyl, carpet, porcelain, glass and even rubber.”
Homicki says DTAC has plans to export and negotiations have already begun with New Zealand and Asia.
“We are currently fine tuning our operations to create a full DTAC business model which can be adapted to each market anywhere in the world.”