Both the ADA and ICC A117.1 now require that the bottom on vision panels in doors or sidelights be no more than 43″ above the floor. This requirement has been overlooked in several sets of drawings we have reviewed recently. Complying with this requirement is complicated by the fact that this lite may now conflict with either a lockset or exit device also provided on the door. Therefore, the glazing may be required to be located farther away from the strike edge of the door than has been previously considered the normal distance. Also, exit devices may need to be mounted lower than typically done (but within the required mounting height range) so they do not restrict sight lines through the lite.
We suggest that a check be performed on all applicable requirements at the location of any project to determine if the maximum 43″ bottom of glass panels is needed. More information is available by clicking here.