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Disability & public transport. Working for you? - Page 3 - Carers UK Forum

Disability & public transport. Working for you?

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
66 posts
P.S Tube? Fuggedit.

You end up having to rely on passenger's help far too often. And I think we all know how often that goes wrong. Sometimes dangerously so. They always think they know how to handle a wheelchair. They usually don't.

For some reason, they seldom wait for instructions, they just rush in and grab any old bit. Or, they do wait for you to explain, but then they simply fail to follow them....e.g grab the wheelchair HERE and NOT there (proceeds to grab wrong part, wheelchair rotates in space and almost dumps me out on the floor).

Ambulances are good transport though. Paramedics are usually quite adept at handling wheelchairs. Shame they don't run the tube/world eh? Good sense of humour too. Pity I only meet them in ''extenuating circumstances'', plus they only take you to hospital....Right where you don't really want to go. (On a side note, just found out that an estranged younger sibling is studying to be a paramedic in my city. It'll be very strange if she shows up to a call out.....)
Interesting development ... an app for less abled train users :


Disabled train users to get new 'life-changing' app.

A "life-changing" app that can track disabled rail users in real-time will be rolled out nationwide.

The app will update station staff on where a passenger is at any point, useful in the event of a delay, change of platform or missed train.

Four rail companies are using an early version, with the full one to be available across Britain next autumn.

Paralympian Anne Wafula-Strike said the app would "empower disabled people to travel without any fear".

Currently when passengers with mobility problems book assistance, a print-out is given to station staff in the morning.

But when a change occurs there is no way to update the paper list, which can lead to staff being in the wrong place and causing some passengers requiring help to go without assistance at all.

The app, developed by Transreport for the railway industry, will allow users to create a profile, amend and cancel bookings and give staff live information to accommodate short-notice changes.

That sounds good. Of course there needs be staff ready on the platform and appropriate equipment in place too.
The app appears to be the easy part ... intervention of human beings always the hard part.

I presume said app is linked to mobile phones or other device ( I'm a complete dinosaur in that field ! ) ?

If so , I foresee a very practical problem on many manors ... street theft , a sitting target ?

London / The Smoke ... " Blackberry picking " takes on a whole new meaning ... and is highly organised , mobile phones being the currency on many manors.

Nowadays , even the police do not record such " Trivial " crimes ... many readers will know only too well that there are increasing rapidly.
Chris From The Gulag wrote:
Fri Sep 28, 2018 9:39 am
The app appears to be the easy part ... intervention of human beings always the hard part.

I presume said app is linked to mobile phones or other device ( I'm a complete dinosaur in that field ! ) ?

If so , I foresee a very practical problem on many manors ... street theft , a sitting target ?

London / The Smoke ... " Blackberry picking " takes on a whole new meaning ... and is highly organised , mobile phones being the currency on many manors.

Nowadays , even the police do not record such " Trivial " crimes ... many readers will know only too well that there are increasing rapidly.
Yes, the app must be on smartphones, and probably communicates with the train station through mobile internet (4G?)

Agree with Chris about smartphone theft. I hear there's been a sudden increase in my area. I've been aware of this phone theft problem for some time, and always try to buy the cheapest I can. However I've found that anything below about £120 is so slow and lacking in memory that it's almost useless. £120 is a lot to me.

Apparently the thief often rides on a moped, so, if you see a moped suddenly swerving towards you (yep, even on the pavement), put that phone away! And if you're a wheelchair users, try not have it just sitting on your lap.

I usually hide my phone under my thigh, under a jumper folded on my lap, or of course in my coat pocket.......basically anywhere but on show. Also, if I try to only get it out for extended periods (writing text messages) if I'm on the bus or in a shop.

I wish I could go back to a dumb/brick phone, but too many of the apps I use are really useful for keeping in touch with friends/family, and medical needs too. I would also miss the music function on a brick phone. I find music so helpful for keeping my spirits up.
Always helps to be sitting on a V8 when giving chase to gloried hair driers ?

In parts of The Smoke , some newly imported American wheelchairs have now helped to reduce those hair drier raids on the less abled.


Dual functioning ... handy for that next PIP assessment ?

Deluxe models ... one for an AK47 ... in case of several hair driers or ... clearing a pedestrian jam on the pavement ?

And , for those who don't need to ask the price , the " Trump special " ... complete with a lead overcoat ?


( Available through the NHS ? )

Be very careful with the guidance system ... it's American ... aim at Hammersmith and it's likely that Hackney will be obliterated ... or Huddersfield ?

If only to balance the odds ... and to save Plod the paper work ???

Perhaps even a commission on the saving to the tax payers ... by the body count ?

Back to the thread !

Stansted Airport : Anne Wafula-Strike to advise on travel.

A Paralympian who was left "neglected" on a plane has now joined Stansted Airport as an advisor.
Anne Wafula-Strike was stranded on a Ryanair flight to Stansted in August, despite booking assistance a month in advance, when her plane was delayed.

Stansted has since apologised for the "unacceptable service" and invited her on to its disability forum.

She has agreed and said: "If I just complain without having a dialogue with these people it doesn't help."

The wheelchair racer, 49, from Harlow in Essex, was on a flight back from Berlin when the plane landed two hours behind schedule, and she found herself waiting as the other passengers collected their bags and left.

When a staff member arrived to help her 45 minutes later she said they told her they were short-staffed and had been unsure if her flight had arrived.

The experience left her feeling "angry and very neglected" but the 2012 Paralympics athlete said the airport has "put their hands up".

Mrs Wafula-Strike said the airport's disability forum, set up to improve the experience of passengers with accessibility issues, was not just "lip service".

"Just because someone has a disability it does not mean they should be closed out from making things better," she continued.

"As a disabled person I realise that things can be better if I tell them how they can be better for me."

Following on from her experience, she met the airport's head of passenger services, Neil Banks, who said the incident "was the result of some ground-handling staff being out of position due to the volume of late-running aircraft at the time".

He added: "We are working with all our airport partners to avoid any repeat of this type of issue, especially during periods of operational disruption."
The problems for less abled people with transport laid bare ... today's Independent :

https://www.independent.co.uk/travel/ne ... 77211.html

One in four disabled people don’t use public transport due to negative attitudes from other passengers, new research finds.

Disabled people face considerable challenges when it comes to accessibility at UK tourist attractions and getting around on public transport, according to several pieces of new research.

One in four disabled people say negative attitudes from other passengers prevent them from using public transport, while 40 per cent often experience issues or difficulties when travelling by train in the UK, a study from disability equality charity Scope has found.

“I can’t just travel spontaneously; there are long waits at train stations,” said wheelchair user Jignesh Vaidya. “Having been assured at one station that they have notified my destination of my arrival time, I often arrive to find there are no staff there to assist me.”

Amit Patel, who is blind, said: “I travel daily on the trains, tubes and buses around London with my guide dog and two-year-old son, confident that I can get the support I need to get to where I need to go.

“But a negative experience can knock that confidence easily. Travel shouldn’t be a barrier to independence. All transport companies provide help for those that need it, but it’s often not well known, or the service isn’t consistent enough or flexible enough to adapt to the needs of disabled people.”

Meanwhile, accessibility awareness is also a major issue. User experience agency Sigma investigated the user-friendliness of public spaces, transport hubs and leisure venues for disabled people by submitting two accessibility requests – one for a person in a wheelchair and another for somebody with autism – to 132 different organisations.

These included airports, train operators, music venues, sports stadiums, hotels and cinemas. Only 46 per cent of organisations responded to the disabled access request from somebody in a wheelchair – this number dropped to 33 per cent when it came to the request for someone with autism.

Some 27 per cent of venues also gave generic responses to requests that would only be suitable for a physically impaired person, without understanding the difference between physical and cognitive conditions.

“In our experience, most companies want to do more – but have not made their accessibility policy or staff awareness a priority,” says Hilary Stephenson, managing director at Sigma. “However, the commercial benefits of providing full access are clear. It is estimated that thousands of businesses could be turning away the custom of as many as one in five people by being inaccessible to people of ranging abilities or conditions; a loss of £212bn.”

Issues around accessible travel have been brought to the fore in the last year by high-profile cases in the media.

In July, comedian Tanya Lee Davis was left “humiliated and embarrassed” after a Great Western train guard tried to get her to move her mobility scooter for a mother and child. BBC journalist Frank Gardner was stranded on an empty plane at Heathrow airport for the second time in six months. And journalist Hollie Brooks felt “like a second-class citizen” when she boarded a Greater Anglia train in August to find her allotted wheelchair space taken up with a catering trolley and boxes of food.

Problems aren’t confined to trains and buses either, as highlighted by disability activist and postgraduate student Bal Deol. Since she steered a campaign to ensure taxis couldn’t refuse to pick up wheelchair users, she says she’s been “blacklisted” by local cab companies in Stoke on Trent.

“Taxi drivers overcharging or refusing to take people like me prevents wheelchair users from living life with the same level of freedom as non-disabled people.

Last week I was quoted £35 by one taxi driver and £10 by another on the same taxi rank – the disparity is shocking and has obvious financial implications. I have previously been quoted £55 for a one-mile journey after a night out when the going rate for that trip is only £10 for everybody else.”

James Taylor, head of policy and public affairs at Scope, said: “From airports to buses, we’ve heard too many horror stories of disabled people let down by poor infrastructure, bad service, or being treated as an afterthought. This urgently needs to change.

“A genuinely inclusive transport network would allow disabled people to be part of their community, work, and see family and friends.

“Progress towards fair and inclusive transport has been slow, and disabled people want to see change happening a lot faster.”

He added: “That’s why we’re calling on everyone – transport providers, politicians and the public- to play their part.”

Online poll on disabled access available by clicking on the link to the aticle towards the top.
Hey Chris, thanks for posting :)

Re-Your post about armoured wheelchairs. I very much enjoyed the pictures and comedy, tx :D I've had a lot of gas and air (in ambulances) and extra morphine this week, so, pictures are about my level right now. Thanks for being accessible to the neurologically challenged ;) :P
Your welcome.

Black humour is one part of my arsenal.

Virtually the only part during my ten year stretch.
66 posts