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F41: Failure of SC 2.2.1, 2.2.4, and 3.2.5 due to using meta refresh with a time-out


HTML 4.x and XHTML 1.x.

This failure relates to:


meta http-equiv of refresh is often used to periodically refresh pages or to redirect users to another page. If the time interval is too short, people who are blind will not have enough time to make their screen readers read the page before the page refreshes unexpectedly and causes the screen reader to begin reading at the top. Sighted users may also be disoriented by the unexpected refresh.


Failure Example 1

This is a deprecated example that changes the user's page at regular intervals. Content developers should not use this technique to simulate "push" technology. Developers cannot predict how much time a user will require to read a page; premature refresh can disorient users. Content developers should avoid periodic refresh and allow users to choose when they want the latest information. (The number in the content attribute is the refresh interval in seconds.)

<html xmlns="">   
    <title>HTML Techniques for WCAG 2.0</title>     
    <meta http-equiv="refresh" content="60" />   

Failure Example 2

This is a deprecated example that redirects the user to another page after a number of seconds. Content developers are recommended to user server-side redirects instead. (The number in the content attribute is the refresh interval in seconds.)

<html xmlns="">   
    <title>The Tudors</title>     
    <meta http-equiv="refresh" content="10;URL=''" />   
    <p>This page has moved to a <a href=""></a>. Please note that we now have our own 
    domain name and will redirect you in a few seconds. Please update 
    your links and bookmarks.</p>



  1. Find meta elements in the document.

  2. For each meta element, check if it contains the attribute http-equiv with value "refresh" (case-insensitive) and the content attribute with a number (representing seconds) greater than 0.

Expected Results