Spectrum Scanners From Bwe Bell + Howell Now Fully Accessible for People With Disabilities

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The Copiscan 8000 Spectrum family of production scanners is now accessible to users with disabilities, a result of recent enhancements made by Bwe Bell + Howell to meet the requirements of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.

Section 508 is a federal regulation mandating the accessibility of all electronic and information technology systems used or procured by the U.S. government.

We are committed to providing scanning technologies that are easy for anybody to use, including federal employees who are visually impaired or who have hearing loss, said Mark Neff, federal sales manager of Bwe Bell + Howell Scanners. By making all Spectrum Series models Section 508 compliant, we can help government agencies and their departments operate high-volume document imaging systems without sacrificing productivity.

The Spectrum Series are the industrys most cost-effective production scanners for scanning in color, bitonal and grayscale.

Technical Support, Operating Manuals Updated

The Spectrum line of scanners was already in accordance with some aspects of Section 508: All models are accessible to wheelchair-users, and all moving parts do not require more than five pounds of physical force to use. Even so, Bwe Bell + Howell made several enhancements to Spectrum and its technical support to ensure that people who are deaf, partially deaf, blind or visually impaired also can fully operate and maintain the scanner and to comply with Section 508 standards.

The primary enhancement is the addition of an Audible Tone Assistance feature to the scanners operator interface, so that written information on the front panel LCD can be communicated to blind or severely visually impaired operators via a series of tones. Each tone pattern communicates something different, much like Morse code.

Bwe Bell + Howell developed quick reference guides in Braille and large print that explain what each sequence of tones means and how to navigate the scanner's user menus. The company will provide either guide at no charge to those who require it.

Lastly, Bwe Bell + Howell added a TTY (Text Telephone) line at its technical support facility, which is a telephone device for scanner operators who are deaf or partially deaf but still need to communicate over the phone. With the TTY line in place, technical support employees can conduct two-way conversations with users over a telephone line by typing questions and answers via text using their PCs. The phone number for Bwe Bell + Howells TTY technical support line is (847) 423-3032.

Bwe Bell + Howell tested and modified the Spectrum Series for Section 508 compliance with assistance from the Bartimaeus Group. Bartimaeus is a McLean, Va., company that specializes in providing adaptive technology solutions and Section 508 testing services.

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