AASHTOWare Project™ Software and ADA Compliance

August 27, 2020

Ensuring that AASHTOWare Project and all product extensions are American Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant is a primary goal of the AASHTOWare Project Taskforce (PTF). Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C. § 794d) requires that Federal agencies’ electronic and information technology is accessible to people with disabilities, including employees and members of the public.

In partnership with Infotech, the official AASHTOWare Project contractor, we conduct annual Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) audits with a goal of meeting Level AA compliance per the requirement found in section of the AASHTOWare Standards & Guidelines Notebook. The VPAT is a document that explains how information and communication technology products must meet the standards for IT accessibility. In this article, we’ll cover what the VPAT process looks like and how to view compliance reports. Note that these reports apply to all AASHTOWare Project modules in active development.

VPAT Audit Process

During the audit process, Infotech conducts an automated and manual review of every control used in the system. The first step is to use an automated tool called Accessibility Insights that analyzes the target control for ADA compliance issues and provides a final report on action items. The Accessibility Insights tool looks for common compliance issues such as color contrast, logically descending headings, non-HTML content, images without alt tags, and more.

After the automated review, Infotech conducts a manual review of issues such as tab order, screen reader capabilities, keyboard behavior, control focus and ordering, table ordering, and heading layout in a standard representation of where the control is found throughout the system.


Targeting AA Compliance

In both our automated and manual reviews of accessibility, we target AA compliance. AA compliance means that any ADA issues that are impacting a user’s ability to perform their job in production should be classified as “Critical” so they can be addressed as quickly as possible.

Version 2 of the VPAT document was expanded to include the leading ICT accessibility standards: Section 508 (U.S.), EN 301 549 (EU), and W3C/WAI WCAG

For more information, see https://www.itic.org/policy/accessibility/vpat.


Viewing Compliance Reports

Interested users can access the latest VPAT compliance report here. Compliance reports are found by navigating to the Accessibility section of the AASHTOWare website.

We are always on the lookout for ADA compliance-related TMRs. In the recent AASHTOWare Project 4.3 release, 17 accessibility-related TMRs were addressed. If you notice any compliance issues, please submit a Call Ticket by contacting Infotech through email at customer.support@infotechinc.com or via aashtowareproject.org by navigating to Support > Call Tickets > Create Call Ticket. Please include that it is an ADA-related issue in the Call Ticket.


– Jamey Wilhite, PE, Engineering Systems Administrator, Arkansas Department of Transportation & Paul Guidry, Director of Technology and Development, Infotech