A professional resource for the design curious

Get the latest design news direct to your inbox!

How linear drains are delivering universal design for aged care

In aged care environments, a universal design approach ensures elderly residents can live with ease and safety. Seamless solutions like Stormtech’s linear drainage are the perfect fit for this. We break it down for you.

How linear drains are delivering universal design for aged care

In 1989 John Creighton, the founder of Stormtech, was asked by an architect to help design a shower for someone who, despite being confined to a wheelchair, wanted to be able to wash privately without the assistance of a carer.

The product John came up with in response was a new type of drainage grate. Then unheard of, but today well recognised as a ‘linear drain’, it made it possible for the architect to design a hobless shower – and made the client’s wish to be able to shower alone a reality.

Today, more than thirty years on, Stormtech is established as a global leader in the design and manufacture of linear drainage. Made from either stainless steel or UPVC and available in modular kits, fixed-lengths units or customised lengths with variable outlet positions, the range includes products suitable for most residential applications.

Ageing in place

Considering the origins of its signature product line, Stormtech is well-versed in addressing the needs of those with ambulatory challenges. The company understands that these extend beyond the disability sector to aged care and elsewhere.

Right now, in Australia, aged care is in crisis. As highlighted by the findings of the Royal Commission into Aged Care, and reinforced by the march of COVID-19 through residential aged care, too many of our senior citizens are simply not receiving the standard of care they require (and deserve).

Stormtech linear drains for aged care

Here it’s important to recognize that, in terms of aged care, residential aged care is not the end of the story. As they age and face a range of challenges, many people prefer to stay in their own homes. ‘Ageing in place’, as this choice is sometimes known, is becoming more and more popular.

The proviso here is that those choosing this arrangement receive the assistance they require. They require adequate medical and social support, and they need to be able to know that their homes, themselves, don’t represent a threat to their health.

Removing accessibility barriers

Here the concept of ‘Universal Design’ – the practice of creating environments that offer safety and comfort for all people, regardless of age or physical ability, with no need for adaptation or functional changes – is worth considering.

Universal design equates to things like single-level living, entrances without barriers, smooth floors that eliminate trip hazards, and so forth.

Stormtech linear drains for aged care

And it equates to the thoughtful inclusion of fittings like linear drains, as manufactured and supplied by Stormtech. Featuring an elongated rectilinear design for water egress that captures the flow of water towards a single exit port to deliver the most efficient drainage, linear drains remove the access and mobility constraints of centralised drainage.

Specified in bathroom applications, they eliminate the need for shower hobs or curbs; require only a single slope and a relatively level floor; and reduce the incidence of ponding and slippery floors.

Stormtech linear drains for aged care

Alternatively, when specified as threshold drains – between indoor and outdoor areas on patios and so forth – they eliminate the need for a stepdown and remove trip hazards and accessibility barriers.

Efficient and effective, and also unobtrusive and attractive, they help ensure homes are welcoming and safe; settings in which some of our most vulnerable are able to live their best lives, independently and without fear.

To learn more about Stormtech’s lineal drainage solutions for ageing-in-place applications, click here.



INDESIGN is on instagram

Follow @indesignlive

The Indesign Collection

A searchable and comprehensive guide for specifying leading products and their suppliers

Indesign Our Partners

Keep up to date with the latest and greatest from our industry BFF's!

Related Stories

While you were sleeping

The internet never sleeps! Here's the stuff you might have missed