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CBRD has been built from the ground up to be accessible to as many people as possible. This page explains what special features exist for users of non-visual browsers, screenreaders and mobile devices, and how those features can be put to use by those with visual browsers.
"Access keys" have been assigned to each of the links on the main menu to allow faster access. There are also two links above the main menu which are hidden in visual browsers; these also have access keys.
|0||Home page (zero)|
|F||British Roads FAQ|
|E||Contact (E for Email)|
|X||Skips navigation and jumps directly to page content|
|Z||Accessibility information (this page)|
Access keys were designed for users who have difficulty pointing-and-clicking, but many users can make use of them for faster navigation as most conventional browsers now support their use. Try pressing Alt and one of the keys.
Links to other websites will open in the same window. Additionally, if the link text itself does not make the identity of the other website perfectly obvious, you can hover the mouse over the link to see more information. Here's an example.
You can also hover over many internal links to find out more. Try this on the main navigation bar on this page.
Wherever possible, technical terms, abbreviations and acronyms are avoided to make CBRD as easy to read as possible. However, they do crop up occasionally. Now you can get instant clarification: hover the mouse pointer over any word underlined with grey dots to see its meaning. Try it out on this abbr. or this TLA.
Most users, using a conventional browser on a computer, will view CBRD with its stylesheet, giving the page its background images, colours and layout. But the site has been designed to degrade more gracefully for those who cannot or do not use stylesheets: users of text-based browsers, screen readers or mobile devices will now find it much easier to view the site.
While every effort has been made to permit all visitors to access CBRD, no matter how they view the internet, some parts of the site are rendered inaccessible by their content. They are as follows:
- The Motorway Database pages contain exit lists which are rendered using a complex HTML table. In a non-visual browser this is both time-consuming and very difficult to follow. However, there is other useful content on the Motorway Database pages, all of which occurs before the exit list and which is readily accessible to all users.
- One section in Articles on the subject of Pedestrian Crossings uses Macromedia Flash animations in pop-up windows. These are only suitable for users of visual browsers. However, they remain supplementary and are not necessary to understand the article.
- The archive of old and removed pages in Site Info contains all sorts of rubbish that would not pass the accessibility standards these days.
- I'm aware that the use of CAPTCHA on my email and update forms makes them difficult for some users, and I'm working on ways to replace these with more accessible systems.
- Finally, occasional use is made of Adobe PDF files as wrappers for series of images — such as, for example, the scanned pages of a booklet. No PDF file on this site will contain anything suitable for non-visual browsers.
I'm always interested in your ideas for improving CBRD's accessibility. If you have any comments, please let me know.