Who Is Seiichi Miyake and Why Did He Make Truncated Domes?

tactile warning surface

In 1965, the inventor Seiichi Miyake created something that would spread to almost every civilized country in the world. Since the creation of truncated domes, a tactile warning surface that is built into sidewalks and pedestrian thoroughfares, they have been installed throughout his native Japan, as well as Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States.

Seiichi Miyake wanted to help people with visual impairments travel safely through the streets of Tokyo. He was also worried that people who could not see well were in danger when boarding a train. In the 1970s, all Japan Railway platforms were modified to include tactile warning surfaces, which were in two distinct patterns.

The first pattern was a series of lines which indicated that the person traveling along the path should continue forward. The second pattern consisted of truncated domes, which would indicate the person should stop because of a change in direction or a transition from sidewalk to motorway, or that they were reaching the end of the boarding platform and should wait for the train to stop before proceeding.

After the United Stated enacted the ADA, truncated domes have become mandatory on all sidewalks, in all train stations, and on public thoroughfares that coincide with motorized traffic areas. While they do not require the lined tiles that mean “go” in Japan, they do require the textured tiles that mean “stop.”

To find out more about this amazing invention and how it can help you protect persons with visual disabilities, please contact ADA Tile by calling 800-372-0519.