Provision of Transport Services

Overview

This report is one in a series of reports, which presents research commissioned by the NDA in 2002. This series contributes to our strategic aims by providing much needed baseline evidence on the quantum and range of service provision in Ireland for people with disabilities and a review of international practice in the field against which to measure Ireland's strengths and weaknesses in the sector. Each report in the series begins by providing an overview of the legislative and policy context for the provision of services and concludes with a discussion regarding gaps in service provision and reflections from the NDA on necessary measures to bring Ireland's service provision in line with best practice.

Importantly, each report identifies the NDA's focus for further policy, research and standards work during the lifetime of our second strategic plan, covering the period 2004 - 2006.

1. Methodology

Consultants at Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH) were commissioned to undertake a review of transport service provision for the NDA. BAH was supported in this research effort by Taylor Lightfoot Consultants and the TAS Partnership Limited, and we acknowledge their important contribution to our programme of work.
The researchers were asked to identify current and recent research in the field, and collate available information on the quantum and range of services currently available. They also set out to review the literature and survey providers to identify: key policy documents, regulations, statutory and non-statutory codes of practice underpinning development of transport services in Ireland, and as far as possible, the range and quantum of transport services, programmes, and measures available for people with disabilities in Ireland. Finally, the researchers provide a review of international good practice in relation to the quantum and range of service/programme provision for people with disabilities in this sector.
The research involved a range of approaches, including desk research, interviews, surveys and consultation within the sector.
This report explores current transport provision and best practice across land, sea, and air travel. The review found that there is significant progress in many of the areas raised in the 1996 report of The Commission on the Status of People with Disabilities. This progress includes the improved accessibility of buses operating local services in Dublin and other major towns and cities, specific accessibility improvements in other modes of transport, equality/disability training within the transport sector, improved consultation with people with disabilities, improvements to certain bus and rail stations, increases in allowances and use of free travel passes, parking regulations and assistance on school buses for children with disabilities.
The National Development Plan contains a number of commitments regarding investment in transport infrastructure and facilities. Specifically all new and upgraded rail and bus stations, all light rail vehicles and suburban railcars and all buses financed under the NDP must be accessible to people with mobility and sensory impairments.

The establishment of the Dept. of Transport (DoT) under the current government with responsibility for the national roads programme, aviation and public transport provides a welcome opportunity for more integrated service provision, standard setting and agreed policy and timeframes on accessibility and other targets. The Department's Public Transport Accessibility Committee works to advise the DoT on accessibility policy and implementation. Equally the establishment of the Dublin Transport Office provides an opportunity for integrated transport provision in the largest metropolitan area in the state.
However, serious challenges remain if we are to be confident of a transport system, which provides for "Transport for All".
A large part of existing rail transport infrastructure dates back to the 19th Century and will require substantial investment to make accessible. Accessible long distance coaches are still at the trial stage and will take some years yet before they are introduced as the standard for the coach fleet. The introduction of a fully accessible taxi service still requires developments in design specification and the introduction of standards for services. Access to the pedestrian and transport infrastructure requires investment and greater cooperation and coordination between transport service providers and local authorities.
Significantly, at present there is no statutory requirement to ensure transport services are accessible, though the pending Disability Bill may address this. The provisions of Sections 17 and 18 of the Equal Status Act 2000 which refer to accessibility of new road and rail passenger vehicles and bus and rail stations respectively provide a basis for action with agreement from the relevant Minister.
There is also no comprehensive set of agreed national standards and/or codes of practice to cover all aspects of the journey by all modes in Ireland. Transport providers currently use various standards in providing accessible facilities and services. However, there is no process in place to monitor service provision against these standards. At present the NDA is engaged in discussions with Dept. of Transport, and the Dept. of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources to address the development of appropriate standards.
The review revealed significant difficulties in accessing data on the quantum of local transport services accessible to people with disabilities, apart from mainstream, timetabled public transport operated by the CIÉ Group and some private operators.
International evidence outlined within endorses the "Transport for All" concept advocated in the report of The Commission on the Status of People with Disabilities (1996) which provides an approach in which the design process:

  • Accommodates as many people as possible in a mainstream public transport solution;
  • Determines how to provide the service for those excluded from this mainstream process; and
  • Works continuously to find and incorporate new ideas, materials, technologies and methods into on-going designs so that more people can be included in the mainstream solution in future.

Accessible mainstream public transport is more attractive to all, setting off a virtuous circle where more people use public transport and the resulting additional demand enables even better service provision which is more attractive, so more people switch to public transport from car or door-to-door services.
Local transport is the most important component of an accessible transport system and the travel chain, as it is the most used form of public transport and the initial stage in longer distance journeys (feeder service). Access to it is therefore a key issue and incorporates consideration of the physical environment, including footways and other aspects of the route to and from the first point of use, the rolling stock and vehicles, interchange facilities, information and customer care. Experience in Ireland and elsewhere has shown that this is also the aspect of the public transport system which is hardest to 'get right', requires the most attention from planners and operators, and the most operating funding. Recommendations from the NDA towards the development of "Transport for All" are outlined within.

2. Discussion

2.1 General Issues

One of the key responsibilities for government is to ensure that individuals can move around freely to the best of their abilities and be able to engage in life in a meaningful way. A major component to this is the adequate provision of an integrated accessible public transport service which enables older and ageing people and people with disabilities to fully participate in society.

Lack of access to public transport for people with physical disabilities means that they are unable to leave their immediate environs without arranging for private transport or having to pay for a taxi.

The lack of provision of an appropriate and adequate level of public transport significantly diminishes the quality of life for people who are heavily dependent on it. This impacts on their ability to pursue education, attend training courses, work outside the home or live in the area of their choice. They cannot participate in social activities on the same basis as their non-disabled peers. They are prevented from going into the city to window-shop or browse. It also deprives people with disabilities of the right to spontaneous action.
This can be particularly acute in rural areas of Ireland where no public transport service is available and where there is a need for further support in the development of innovative initiatives, within rural communities, to provide local accessible transport.

Public transport accessibility issues go beyond the needs of people with disabilities. They also involve the transport needs of the wider community, who at some time in their lives have some form of impairment which makes travelling difficult, if not impossible, if the mode of transport or the built and external environment is not accessible.

The concept of "Transport for All" is now generally accepted within the EU and the European Council of Ministers for Transport (ECMT). The Department of Transport has also embraced this concept. Such a concept includes a broad proportion of the population and not just people with disabilities. Thus it removes the notion that "special" provision needs to be made for people with disabilities.

Mobility is the key to equal citizenship in a society which sets a high value on personal independence and freedom to move around. Accessibility to transport modes enable people to access and avail of goods, services, employment and other activities.

2.2 Specific Issues

While acknowledging the progress to date there are a number of challenges still to be met. In summary these are:

2.2.1 National Policy

In order to build on the progress to date regarding the provision of accessible public transport, there is a need to develop an accessible integrated transport policy for mobility and sensory impaired people. Such a policy needs to be applied not only within the Department of Transport but across all other agencies and departments with responsibility for transport. In this context the lead role of the Department of Transport is critical.

The development of such a policy would include, inter alia

  • The adoption and implementation of a "Transport for All" policy;
  • The integration of transport policy with other policies, e.g. in the area of social inclusion;
  • Accessibility planning;
  • The development of transport infrastructure and pedestrian environment;
  • The development of guidelines and Codes of Practice for Quality Customer Services for Transport Operators which should include, inter alia, provision for Equality/Disability Training, training in accessibility, etc.;
  • The coordination and integration of the provision of all public transport including data collection on all publicly funded accessible transport;
  • Integration across and within transport modes;
  • Integration of Real Time Passenger Information and Passenger Information needed to avail of public transport services;
  • Development of local integrated transport services including demand responsive and flexibly routed services;
  • The introduction of accessible coaches on a route by route basis especially those linked to major centres of population and key services routes such as ferry and airport terminals;
  • Agreed timeframe for roll out of accessible vehicles and monitoring of same.

2.2.2 Legislation and Regulation

There is a need for specific legislation to be enacted to ensure the comprehensive delivery of accessible public transport. While there is some provision under the Equal Status Act 2000 (sections 17 & 18) for the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, in consultation with the Minister for Transport, to make regulations regarding accessibility of new vehicles and bus and rail stations, this provision has not been enacted. Similarly, the former Disability Bill 2001 made provision regarding access and accessibility in transport and it may be assumed that some provision will also be contained in the forthcoming disability legislation.
However, it is critical that transport legislation per se should contain specific requirements to ensure accessibility for people with disabilities. It is vital that transport legislation does this to ensure coordination and harmonisation within the broader transport legislative and regulatory framework. This is important given the range of regulation and legislation that is and will be emerging within the Transport area, e.g.

  • the recent Taxi Regulation Act 2003;
  • the proposed restructuring of Aer Rianta and CIÉ;
  • the proposed Railway Safety Act and establishment of Rail Safety Commission;
  • the opening up and licensing of transport services to private operators;
  • the proposed establishment of a Greater Dublin Transport Authority etc.

Such an approach would ensure that the Department of Transport would take a lead role in adopting a mainstream approach in relation to public transport accessibility and in making provision in an integrated fashion for all transport users.

2.2.3 Investment

Investment in accessible transport should be a major infrastructural priority. Over the years there has not been significant investment in public transport and it is only in recent years of economic growth that such investment by the State has been made.
An integrated accessible public transport service will make large demands on the exchequer. It will also involve a range of stakeholders (e.g. private coach/bus operators currently operate approximately 8,000 vehicles most of which are inaccessible) and investments in the built and external environment through which transport operates.
The protracted economic life of transport stock presents barriers. For example, if the State-funded public transport operators are to continue with the current rate of replacement of vehicles and rolling stock and the introduction of new vehicles, one could be faced with the following possible scenario

  • Dublin Bus has a policy of replacing buses after a 12 year life span, thus replacing approximately 85 buses per year and this would mean that it would be 2011 before all non accessible buses are replaced. However, the current level of profitability within this company may not allow for this timescale and one could be faced with it being deferred by 5-10 years;
  • Bus Éireann has converted all its urban services to low floor buses. However, none of its coaches providing inter-urban, suburban and rural services is accessible. The difficulty is that there is no safe, universally accepted, wheelchair accessible coach in manufacture. While some progress has been made under EU initiatives and piloting of prototypes are currently taking place, one could be faced with the situation that it could take years before a suitable vehicle begins to come on stream and then the phasing in process only begins and may not be completed until 2022;
  • DART and suburban rolling stock should be fully accessible by 2005;
  • LUAS will be a fully accessible system when it comes on stream;
  • Inter city rail rolling stock should be fully accessible by 2012.

The current level of investment in replacement vehicles and rolling stock is a minimum requirement based primarily on safety replacement issues. Given the under funding over the years this minimum investment is constantly in a "catch up" situation and is particularly vulnerable in a climate where the slower pace of economic growth impacts on public expenditure, and where there are competing priorities both within Government Departments and within the Department of Transport itself (for example investment in roads versus investment in public transport infrastructure).
The challenge is to secure a firm Government commitment to the provision of an integrated accessible transport service and that investment in accessible public transport services continues.

2.2.4 Research Data and Information

2.2.4.1 Research

There is a need for research that supports the development and implementation of an integrated accessible public transport policy.
In addition there are specific issues within transport requiring research and analysis, for example

  • the evaluation of transport provision by voluntary organisations; health boards; schools and rural transport initiatives;
  • analysis of transport trends;
  • evaluation of Equality/Disability training provided to staff working within transport services etc.

2.2.5 Data

There is a need for a comprehensive integrated strategy for data and statistics in relation to public transport. Currently such data is collected in an ad hoc fashion by a variety of stakeholders, e.g. transport operators, a number of Government Departments, Health Boards, Local Authorities etc. As a result it is very difficult to get a clear picture on data regarding funding and provision of local transport for people with disabilities.
Primary data collection is critical for the development of an integrated accessible public transport service and for its implementation and monitoring.
The Department of Transport should have oversight in the development and maintenance of a centralised database. This would facilitate inter alia the coordination of transport provision, public funding allocations on transport provision and the integration of local service provision.

2.2.6 Information

People need timely, accurate, reliable information on all travel choices available to them. If public transport is to be used by people with disabilities, people must become familiar with it and be satisfied with using it. For a person intending to travel they need to know

  • Routes;
  • Stops and interchanges;
  • Timetables;
  • How modes and services connect with each other.

In addition a person with a disability may need to know to what extent the particular modes and/or interchanges are accessible.
There is a need for a single travel information source. The Dublin Transportation Office (DTO) has submitted a report, A Strategy for Integrated Public Transport Information, including Real Time, in the Greater Dublin Area to the Minister for Transport. This could be a useful model for the development of this important service.

2.2.7 Standards and Guidelines

The development of guidelines, codes of practice and the implementation of standards are key factors in delivering integrated and quality transport services to everyone.
There is a need for a consistent and coordinated approach, thus ensuring that all modes of transport and all transport operators deliver quality customer service.
There are a number of opportunities within current developments in transport to ensure an agreed set of guidelines and standards for all aspects of travel, for example

  • The adoption of the Voluntary Airline and Airport Passenger Service Commitments by all airports and airlines in Ireland;
  • Accessibility proofing to an agreed standard of the current proposals regarding safety both in the Review of Domestic Passenger Ship Legislation and the Railway Safety Legislation;
  • Ensuring the most up to date accessibility standards in the purchasing contracts for replacement of vehicles, rolling stock and equipment such as the integrated ticketing system;
  • Delivering on quality standards within the Taxi service as provided for in the Taxi Regulation Bill 2003. This provides for the Commission to make regulations with regard to, among other things, the making of standards for the access and carriage of people with mobility and sensory impairments, including wheelchair users, and to set requirements and conditions with regard to the knowledge and ability of drivers to meet the needs of people with disabilities.

2.2.8 Equality/Disability Training

Transport accessibility depends on the awareness and positive attitude of the whole community - in particular transport staff. All staff working within a travel chain should have equality/disability awareness.
Progress has been made in this area with certain transport operators, for example, Dublin Bus and Bus Éireann have provided training for many staff, appointed Equality Officers etc.
There is a need to effectively monitor the effectiveness and impact of such training and the benefits to passengers with disabilities. Similarly some training has been carried out within Aer Rianta. The Taxi Regulation Act 2003 specifically provides for mandatory training in this area and for regulations regarding the conduct and duties of drivers of small public service vehicles, including those that relate to the facilitation of the needs of passengers with disabilities.
There is a need to have this regulated in a coordinated and consistent fashion across all modes of transport and for all transport operators. Equality/disability training should be mandatory for all staff who work in transport services.

2.2.9 Universal Access - Transport for All

The implementation of a "Transport for All" policy requires an integrated planning approach to transport accessibility within which the needs of people with disabilities are included.
A good example of a coordinated approach to providing accessibility is the development of Quality Bus Corridors in the Dublin Area. This involved a range of different statutory agencies and Government Departments, resulting in the provision of accessible paving, bus stops and external built environment interacting effectively with low floor accessible buses. Bus stops are the responsibility of local authorities and, therefore, fall outside the remit of the Department of Transport.
In line with the Government's commitment to mainstreaming, the Department of Transport should take a lead role in bringing together the different government departments and statutory agencies in order to provide an integrated planning and implementation approach to accessible public transport. A key feature should be accessibility planning and would include such measures as

  • Improving physical access through accessible vehicles and stations and improvements to the pedestrian environment;
  • Making good deficiencies in the provision of services through the land use planning process;
  • Increasing the provision or improving journey times, service frequency and reliability of accessible public transport;
  • Providing accessible travel information;
  • Making travel affordable.

In applying the principles of "Transport for All" the Government would improve transport services and make them available, accessible, affordable and reliable for all the public to use.

3. Conclusions and Recommendations

The NDA has identified Transport as a key strategic policy area in its Strategic Plan 2004 - 2006. The delivery of an accessible public transport service and the planning for and development of the necessary infrastructure, however, is of its nature long term.
The NDA is committed to addressing the issues that impact on the lives of people with disabilities and, in particular, to maximising opportunities to influence the mainstream public transport agenda.

Priorities for NDA

Within the next three years NDA will work with the Department of Transport and other relevant stakeholders in the following areas:

3.1 National Policy

Recommendation 1:Transport Policy for People with Mobility Impairments

The Department of Transport should consult with the NDA in the development of an accessible, integrated transport policy for people with mobility and sensory impairments that would include developing standards for all conveyances, staff training and services. In line with the Department's Statement of Strategy 2003 - 2005, this policy would transfer to other agencies and government departments responsible for the delivery of transport services to the mobility impaired.

3.2 Legislation and Regulation

Recommendation 2: Implementation of Primary Legislation

The provisions in Sections 17 and 18 of the Equal Status Act 2000 should be taken up and the appropriate regulations made as soon as possible. This would enable action to be taken in advance of any elements relating to transport, which might be contained in the forthcoming Disability Bill, being enacted.

Recommendation 3: Regulatory framework for passenger transport services

The NDA should liase with the Department of Transport on the proposals for changes in the regulatory framework and the administration of the proposed framework governing road passenger transport. In particular the NDA should advise on the development of demand-responsive and flexibly-routed services, and the involvement of voluntary or community-based organisations and taxis/hackneys in the delivery of local public transport services. These proposals and the development of such services will require changes to road service licensing and the definition of what constitutes a route.

Recommendation 4: Continued introduction of low floor buses in the Greater Dublin Area

  1. The programme of replacing older buses operated in the Greater Dublin area by Bus Átha Cliath with low floor buses should continue until all routes have been converted. The NDA should review the Department of Transport monitoring of this programme.
  2. Given that there are likely to be changes to the way in which services in the Greater Dublin Area are to be provided in future, it is essential that all routes operated as public services by all operators are served by low floor buses.

Recommendation 5: Level of Taxi Provision

In light of the decision by the Department of Transport to no longer require that all taxis should be accessible to wheelchair users remaining in their wheelchairs for the journey, the NDA should liase closely with the Department, the Taxi Regulator and the representatives of the taxi trade in order to ensure that an agreed minimum level of provision in each licensing area is accessible to wheelchair users remaining in their wheelchairs for the journey and that any level agreed is enforced effectively.

3.4 Investment

Recommendation 6: Advising on Progress

The NDA should monitor expenditure and timescale for the required accessibility improvements. The NDA within its statutory remit should advise the Minister with regard to progress.

Recommendation 7: Continuation of investment in rail as the key to interurban accessibility

Most interurban road passenger services are operated by coaches, which have poor accessibility and will continue to do so for some time. There is, therefore, a need for the Department of Transport to prioritise investment in station improvements and rolling stock replacement as rail offers the only practical option at present for interurban travel by people with mobility and sensory impairments. The NDA should review the Department of Transport's monitoring of progress, expenditure and timescale for the required accessibility improvements.

3.5 Research Data and Information

Recommendation 8: Primary Data Collection

Detailed reporting and monitoring of expenditure on transport by purchasers, ideally relating which aspects relate to different users, is needed. Primary, local-level research, leading to the setting up of templates for reporting money spent on transport services at local level will enable better data collection and monitoring. This will improve service provision and planning, and achieve greater transparency in financial support. It would also enable the validation process recommended in Section 3.3.
The collection of data on the funding and provision of local transport for people with disabilities should be dealt with as a mainstream issue. The NDA should advise the Department of Transport in relation to the collection of this data which might be undertaken by ADM (Area Development Management) or the City/County Development Boards.

Recommendation 9: Accessible Mainstream Vehicles

An effective system of data collection in relation to the roll-out of accessible mainstream vehicles is required. The Department of Transport would be best placed to establish this system, with the NDA in an advisory role. The NDA should monitor the data received.

Recommendation 10: Passenger information

A single travel information source, with various media, is required. Whether an accessible mainstream service or a specialised service gives a better service to people with disabilities is debatable. There are advantages in having both. By analogy with the general provision of public transport services, a single travel information source would be of great assistance to the general public as well as to people with disabilities, and would allow a complementary information service to people with disabilities to be provided most efficiently.
A report entitled "Strategy for Integrated Public Transport Information, including Real Time, in the Greater Dublin Area" is currently before the Minister for Transport. This report is the work of the PTI/RTPI committee of the Dublin Transportation Office. The NDA was represented on this committee and should continue to engage with the initiative through the design, implementation and operation phases.
With regard to provision of travel information nationally, the NDA should liaise with Government Departments and operators on options for establishing a national single information source, and act as an advisory body to future initiatives.
In the interim, the NDA should liase with operators on the current information provided (e.g. websites, Iarnród Éireann's Guide to Stations and bus and rail timetables) to ensure it best meets the needs of people with disabilities.

Recommendation 11: Local transport research

Local level practical research should be undertaken into the reorganisation and co-ordination at local level of paratransit services, in order to redefine public passenger transport services.

Recommendation 12: Quality of Service - equality/disability training

NDAshould carry out research in relation to the effectiveness of equality/disability training provided to transport operators.

3.6 Standards and Guidelines

Recommendation 13: Design of large passenger ships

Guidelines published by the International Maritime Organisation, EU Directive 98/18 and subsequent amendments, the UK DPTAC Guidance would provide a suitable basis to meet the needs of people with disabilities in the design of large passenger ships and passenger infrastructure.

Recommendation 14: Voluntary Airline and Airport Passenger Service Commitments.

The NDA should liase with the Department of Transport to ensure the promotion and the adoption in Ireland, by all airlines and airports, of the Voluntary Airline and Airport Passenger Service Commitments. The NDA could also play an advisory role to the Department of Transport in the implementation of the disability specific sections in the commitments.

Recommendation 15: Information for transport providers

A library of information (for example, developments in vehicle design, ticketing, information provision) should be available for transport providers. The NDA should promote with relevant stakeholders the establishment and maintenance of such a resource.

Recommendation 16: Integrated Ticketing

The Railway Procurement Agency is presently leading the development of an electronic "smart card" based integrated ticketing system for the Greater Dublin Area. As with passenger information, the NDA should liase fully with the initiative and review and comment on all proposals in its advisory capacity.

Recommendation 17: Developments in vehicle design

The NDA should ensure that the design standards and any timetable for implementation of the standards adopted continue to support the developments in vehicle design and build, which have taken place over the past few years.

Recommendation 18: Development of national guidelines - Taxis

The NDA should be involved in the development of national guidelines for access to taxis for wheelchair users, which would build upon the existing vehicle accessibility specification and draw from the experience of the EU;Taxis for All project.

3.7 Equality/Disability Training

Recommendation 19: Passenger information

The NDA should liase with operators on the current information provided (e.g. websites, Iarnród Éireann's Guide to Stations and bus and rail timetables) to ensure it best meets the needs of people with disabilities.

Recommendation 20: Quality of Service - equality/disability training

The Department of Transport should liase with the NDA in monitoring operators' equality/disability training programmes, which should be reviewed as new developments take place (i.e. introduction of new technology such as new vehicles or information systems).
In this respect, the NDA should prepare a code of practice for trainers.

3.8 Universal Access - Transport for All

Recommendation 21: Transport for All

The benefits of moving away from the provision of special services to "Transport for All" public transport system should be promoted by the NDA, which should advise and liaise with relevant bodies, including but not limited to the Department of Transport, the CI Group, private operators, the Railway Procurement Agency, the Taxi Regulator and representatives of the taxi industry, to ensure this policy is adopted.

Recommendation 22: Infrastructure improvements associated with low floor bus routes

Improvements to the bus stop environment and the areas adjacent to bus routes are a key element in ensuring that the full benefits of investment in low floor buses will be captured. A programme of improvements associated with the rollout of low floor buses is, therefore, essential. These improvements also need to be included in the development and upgrading of bus stations and interchanges.
The example of Quality Bus Corridors illustrates a partnership approach. This approach generally involved the key stakeholders in the implementation of local accessible transport services, namely the bus operators, the local authorities and the users. The NDA should ensure that it is represented on such partnerships.

Recommendation 23: Planning of new infrastructure

The requirements of accessible rolling stock, low floor buses and accessible coaches (currently being researched and tested elsewhere in Europe) must be taken into consideration in the planning of new supporting infrastructure. The commissioning authorities should work closely with the NDA to ensure that requirements for accessible conveyances are met.

Recommendation 24: Introduction of accessible coaches

As accessible coaches become more available, the NDA should liase with the Department of Transport to ensure they are introduced on a route by route basis, especially those which link up with local accessible services and those which serve major centres of population or interchanges between modes, such as air and sea ports.

4. References

4.1 Bus and coaches

  • COST 322: Low Floor Buses. Final report 1996
  • COST 349: The Accessibility of Coaches and Long Distance Buses for People with Reduced Mobility. (Final report due in June 2005).
  • The Public Service Vehicles Accessibility Regulations 2000. SI 2000 No. 1970 HM Stationery Office.
  • The Public Service Vehicles Accessibility Regulations 2000 Guidance: UK Department for Transport 2000
  • Accessibility and the Bus System: from concepts to practice: Thomas Telford 2002
  • Accessible Transportation. Intercity Bus Code of Practice. Transport Policy Group Canada 1998
  • CIE Bus Network Strategy Appraisal report for the Greater Dublin Area. Scott Wilson report 2000
  • Legibility of Bus Timetable Books and Leaflets: A Code of Good Practice
  • Disabled Peoples Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC)2000
  • Policy on carriage of wheelchairs, prams and strollers. Sydney Buses, New South Wales, Australia. www.sydneybuses.nsw.gov.au.
  • The safety of passengers in wheelchairs on buses. Code of Practice. UK Department of Transport May 1987 Publication VSE 87/1
  • Improving Bus Accessibility Systems for Persons with Sensory and Cognitive Impairments: US Department of Transportation 1993
  • Accessibility Specification for Small Buses to Carry 9 to 22 Passengers (inclusive) DPTAC December 2001

4.2 Rail transport

  • COST 335: Passengers' accessibility of heavy rail systems. European Commission Directorate-General for Transport 1999
  • Rail Vehicle Accessibility Regulations 1998. UK Department for Transport
  • Rail Vehicle Accessibility Regulations 1998 (RVAR) Guidance.
  • UK Department for Transport
  • Rail travel for Disabled Passengers: UKAssociation of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) 2003
  • Passenger Rail Car Accessibility and Terms and conditions of Carriage by Rail of Persons with Disabilities: Code of Practice. Canadian Transportation Agency 1998

4.3 Air transport

  • Airports and Persons with Disabilities: A Handbook for Airport Operators. Airports Council International 4th Edition 2003
  • Airport Voluntary Commitment on Air Passenger Service, Airports Council International Europe, Brussels, 10 May 2001
  • The Airline Passenger Service Commitment: Europe Airports Council International 2001
  • Facilities for Passengers with Reduced Mobility. Aer Rianta 2002
  • Access to air travel: guidance for disabled and less mobile passengers: Published by UK Disabled Peoples Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC) 2003
  • Access to Air Travel for Disabled People - A Code of Practice: UKDepartment of Transport 2003
  • A Guide for Persons with Disabilities. Taking charge of the Air Travel Experience: Canadian Transportation Agency 2002
  • Aircraft Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities. Code of Practice: Canadian Transport Agency 1995
  • Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council: Protection of air passengers in the European Union. COM)2000) 365 final
  • Airport (Amendment) Bye-Laws 1999. SI. No. 469: Persons with Disability

4.4 Taxis

  • Joint ECMT-IRU Study on Economic Aspects of Taxi Accesibility. ECMT 2001
  • Review of the Taxi and Hackney Market, 2001 (Demand and Supply). Goodbody Economic Consultants.
  • The Quality of Dublin's City-Centre Taxi Service: A Peak-Time Survey. Michael Punch 2001
  • Taxi Deregulation: International Comparison. Dissertation by Choong-Ho Kang, Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds 1998
  • The Dublin Taxi market: Re-regulate or Stay Queuing? Dr John Fingleton 1997
  • Public Transport and Taxis in Dublin. Brendan Lynch. Report for the National Taxi Drivers Union and the Irish Taxi Federation 2000
  • Proposals for qualitative improvements in taxi services and the future regulation of those services. Submission to Department of the Environment and Local Government. National Disability Authority 2002
  • Review of Taxi and Hackney Carriage Service in the Dublin Area. Faber Report 1998
  • Wheelchair Accessible Taxi Report: Australian Human Rights and Equality of Opportunity Commission (HREOC) 2002
  • Road Traffic (public Service Vehicles) Amendment Regulations 1998
  • Disability Discrimination Act 1995 The Government's Proposals for Taxis: UK Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (DETR) - Mobility Unit
  • Guidelines for Taxicab Owners/Operators and Disabled Passengers. Manitoba Human Rights Commission, Canada 1998.
  • Meeting the Needs of Passengers with a Disability.A Code of Practice for Taxi Drivers. The Northern Ireland Transport Advisory Committee (TAC) 2000
  • Providing a taxi service for people with disabilities. Radbone and Wooley, Transport Systems Centre, University of South Australia 1998.
  • Carriage of Guide, Hearing and Other Assistance Dogs in Taxis. DETR 2000.
  • Guidelines for the Establishment of Taxicard Schemes. DPTAC 1996
  • Abstract of Laws: General Guidance on Hackney Carriage Law for London's Licensed Cab Drivers. Public Carriage Office 2000

4.5 Marine transport

  • Design of Large Passenger Ships and Passenger Infrastructure: Guidance on Meeting the Needs of Disabled People. DPTAC2000.
  • EU Directive 98/18/EC and corrigendum on safety rules and standards for passenger ships.
  • EU Directive 2002/25/EC amending Council Directive 98/18/EC.
  • EU Directive 2003/24/EC amending Council Directive 98/18/EC.
  • Recommendation on the Design and operation of passenger ships to respond to elderly and disabled persons' needs. International Maritime Organisation (IMO) MSC/735 of 24/6/1996.
  • Ferry Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities. A Code of Practice. Cana dian Transportation Agency 1996

4.6 Door to Door Demand Responsive Transport

  • Blueprint for Change. Community Transport Association UK 1997
  • Mind the Gap. Community Transport Association UK 1997
  • Accessible Minibuses: Design, specification and purchase of 9 - 16 seat vehicles. Community Transport Association UK 2000
  • Let's Get Going. An action guide for community transport in rural England
  • Community Transport Association UK

4.7 Across transport modes

  • Proposals for Integrated Ticketing in the Greater Dublin Area. Report of Integrated Ticketing Committee 2000.
  • Transport and Mobility Working Paper: working group of the Commission on the Status of People with Disabilities 1995
  • European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT), Annual Report 2002.
  • Improving Transport for People with Mobility Handicaps. A Guide to Good Practice. ECMT 1999.
  • Promoting and Planning Transport for all. Tom Rickert, Access Exchange International 2000
  • Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport 2002: Attorney General Australia.
  • Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport Guidelines 2002: Attorney General Australia.
  • Accessibility Specifications for Transportation Vehicles. US Department of Transportation 49 CFR Part 38.
  • Accessibility Guidelines for Transportation Vehicles. The Access Board 36 CFR Part 1192.
  • Social Exclusion and the Provision and Availability of Public Transport: UK Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions 2000.
  • Attitudes of Disabled People to Public Transport. DPTAC 2002
  • The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) - a guide for providers of goods, facilities and services. Royal National Institute for Deaf People (RNID)
  • Rights of Access - Goods, Facilities, Services and Premises. Disability Rights Commission 2002
  • M Ó Riain, "On the Move - Córas Iompair Éireann 1945-95", Dublin 1995
  • "Progress in Europe in Improving Transport for People with Mobility Handicaps", Jack Short, Deputy Secretary General ECMT at Towards Safety, Independence and Security - TRABSED 2001, 9th International Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled People, Warsaw (Poland), 2-5 July 2001
  • "Statement on Public Transport Reform" by Séamus Brennan T.D., Minister for Transport, Meeting of the Public Transport Partnership Forum, Dublin November 2002
  • The Disabled Traveller: www.worldtravelguide.net
  • National Disability Authority IT Accessibility Guidelines version 1.1 available from http://accessit.nda.ie
  • Submission on Integrated Ticketing to Railway Procurement Agency. NDA 2003
  • The ITSO Specification for Interoperable Public Transport Ticketing Using Contactless Smart Cards. Integrated Transport Smartcard Organisation (ITSO) 2000
  • Ticketing for Integrated Transport: The role of smartcards. John Carr Association of Transport Coordinating Officers (ATCO) 2000
  • Ageing and Transport: Mobility needs and safety issues. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development 2001
  • Charter on access to services and infrastructure. ECMT Warsaw 1999
  • Consolidated Resolution No 2001/3 on Accessible Transport. ECMT Lisbon 2001
  • Proceedings of Strengthening the Transport Chain International Seminar on ways of improving and integrating transportation systems for elderly and disabled people. Gothenberg, Sweden 1999
  • Proceedings of the All Aboard Seminar - The Case for Accessible Buses. Liverpool,1998

4.8 Transport information

  • Best Practice Manual for the publication and display of Public Transport Information: New South Wales Ageing and Disability Department 2000
  • Ways to Make Written Documents Accessible to All. National Council for the Blind of Ireland. www.ncb.ie
  • Raising the Standard - A code of practice for the provision of information services to people with disabilities. Irish Wheelchair Association 1999
  • Recommendations for signage: National Council for the Blind of Ireland. www.ncb.ie
  • Sign Design Guide: a guide to inclusive signage : JMU Access Partnership and Sign Design Society 2001

4.9 Transport infrastructure

  • Inclusive Mobility. Sections 2, 9 and 10. Published by the Mobility and Inclusion Unit, UK Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (DETR) 2002
  • Americans with Disabilities Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities. Section 10. Building News 1996
  • The Building Regulations. Part M 2000
  • Building For Everyone. Nat ional Disability Authority 2002

4.10 Training

  • Disability awareness and sensitivity training for bus operators: Community Transportation Association of America 1999
  • Personnel Training for the Assistance of Persons with Disabilities Regulations. Depa rtment of Justice, Canada. 1994

4.11 Transport policy legislation and regulation

  • A Strategy for Equality. Commision on the Status of People with Disabilities 1996
  • Working for You. Statement of Strategy:2003-2005. Department of Transport
  • Traffic Management Guidelines. Government Publications Stationery Office 2003
  • Ireland National Development Plan 2000-2006, Economic and Social Infrastructure Operational Programme, Dublin.
  • "Vehicles for People with Disabilities Tax Relief Scheme", VRT 7, March 2002, The Revenue Commissioners, Dublin.
  • "Passengers with Disabilities", An investigation by the Ombudsman of complaints against the Revenue Commissioners about the refusal of tax relief for cars adapted or constructed for use by passengers with disabilities. A Report to Dáil and Seanad in accordance with Section 6(7) of the Ombudsman Act, 1980, August 2001.
  • "New Institutional Arrangements for Land Use and Transport in the Greater Dublin Area", Consultation Paper, Department of the Environment and Local Government and Department of Public Enterprise, March 2001.
  • "A New Institutional and Regulatory Framework for Public Transport", Department of Public Enterprise, August 2000.

Appendix 1

Special Protocol to Meet the Needs of People with Reduced Mobility
The purpose of this document is to improve the accessibility of air travel to people with reduced mobility by ensuring that their needs are understood and provided for, and that their safety and dignity are respected. It forms the basis on which a voluntary Code (or Codes) of Practice may be prepared by airports. When preparing Codes, the appropriate provisions of the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) Document 30 (Section 5), and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO Annex 9) will be incorporated.

Definition of a person with reduced mobility (PRM)

A person with reduced mobility (PRM) is understood to mean any person whose mobility is reduced due to any physical disability (sensory or locomotory), an intellectual impairment, age, or any other cause of disability when using transport, and whose situation needs special attention or adaptation of services ordinarily made available to all passengers.

Basic assumptions

  • PRMs have the same rights as other citizens to freedom of movement and freedom of choice. This applies to air travel as to all other areas in life.
  • Airports and related service providers have a responsibility to meet the needs of PRMs. PRMs also have a responsibility to identify their needs to the proper channels at the proper time.
  • Information, using accessible formats, must be made available to enable PRMs to plan and make their journey.
  • Disability should not be equated with illness and therefore PRMs must not be required to make medical declarations about their disability as a condition of travel.
  • Organisations representing PRMs will be consulted on all issues relevant to PRMs.
  • Staff will be given appropriate training in understanding and meeting the needs of PRMs.
  • Control and security checks will be undertaken in a manner that respects the dignity of PRMs.
  • PRMs must be enabled to remain independent to the greatest possible extent.
  • The cost of providing for the needs of PRMs must not be passed directly to PRMs.

Provision of Infrastructure

Each airport will ensure that its infrastructure is compatible with the needs of people with reduced mobility and that this part of the service is provided in an efficient manner. This will include access to landside and airside ground transport; parking, pick-up, drop-off and transfer arrangements; and information should be provided both audibly and visually.

Appendix 2

Meeting the Needs of People with Reduced Mobility

The purpose of this document is to improve the accessibility of air travel to people with reduced mobility by ensuring their needs are understood and provided for, and their safety and dignity are respected. It is aimed at airlines providing services and facilities at airports and on aircraft, and forms the basis on which a voluntary Code (or Codes) of Practice may be prepared. When preparing Codes, the appropriate provisions of the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) Document 30 (Section 5), and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO Annex 9) will be considered. These documents provide technical information and are produced, following consultation with the airline industry, by governmental agencies concerned with establishing standards and recommended practices.

Definition

A person with reduced mobility (PRM) is understood to mean any person whose mobility is reduced due to any physical disability (sensory or locomotory), an intellectual impairment, age, or any other cause of disability when using transport and whose situation needs special attention and the adaptation to the person's needs of the services made available to all passengers.

Basic Assumptions

  1. PRMs have the same rights as other citizens to freedom of movement and freedom of choice. This applies to air travel as to all other areas in life.
  2. Airlines, airports and related service providers have a responsibility to meet the needs of PRMs. PRMs also have a responsibility to identify their needs to the proper channels at the proper time.
  3. Information must be made available to enable PRMs to plan and make their journey.
  4. The cost of providing for the needs of PRMs must not be passed directly to the PRMs.
  5. Disability should not be equated with illness and therefore PRMs must not be required to make medical declarations about their disability as a condition of travel.
  6. Organisations representing PRMs will be consulted on issues relevant to PRMs.
  7. Staff will be given appropriate training in understanding and meeting the needs of PRMs.
  8. Control and security checks should be undertaken in a manner which respects the dignity of PRMs.
  9. PRMs must be enabled to remain independent to the greatest possible extent.

Airline Practices

No carrier will refuse a PRM except where he/she cannot safely be carried or cannot physically be accommodated. When the carriage of a PRM is refused, carriers will explain clearly and explicitly the reasons for refusal.

When a PRM declares that he/she is self-reliant (self-sufficient and capable of taking care of all of his/her physical needs independently in flight), the airline should accept that declaration. The airline should then be under no obligation to provide on-board assistance which contravenes health, safety or hygiene requirements where such declaration has been made.

Airlines will pursue technical and operational options for improving access and facilities on aircraft of all sizes, particularly when major refurbishment is undertaken. Where a direct route is not possible for a PRM, (e.g. because of small aircraft), airlines will endeavour to suggest an acceptable alternative. Regardless of the size of airport and aircraft, arrangements for embarkation and disembarkation should respect the dignity of PRMs.

Airlines will, where space permits, provide on-board equipment/ facilities to aid the self-reliance of PRMs within limits of health, safety and hygiene.

PRMs will have equal choice of seat allocation, subject to safety requirements. Airlines will explain clearly and explicitly the reasons for not allocating a specific seat when the request is not met for safety reasons.

Certified Service Dogs will be carried in the cabin, subject to national importation and airline regulations. Where they are carried, there will be no charge.

PRMs will not be charged for the carriage of basic mobility equipment or other essential disability assistive devices.

Airlines must take all reasonable steps to avoid loss or damage to mobility equipment or other disability assistive devices. Where loss or damage occurs, airlines will make appropriate arrangements to meet the individual's immediate mobility needs.

Glossary

ATM
Automatic Teller Machines
ADA
Americans with Disabilities Act
BAH
Booz Allen Hamilton
CIE
Córas Iompar Éireann
COP
Code of Practice
COST
European Cooperation in the field of Scientific and Technical Research
CPC
Certificate of Professional Competence
CRID
Consorci de Recursos per a la Integracio de la Diversitat
DART
Dublin Area Rapid Transit
DASH
Dublin Area Suburban Enhancement
DDA
Disability Discrimination Act 1995
DDAI
Disabled Drivers Association of Ireland
DG TREN
The European Commission Directorate for Energy and Transport
DLA
Disability Living Allowance
DMU
Diesel Multiple Unit
DOT
Department of Transport
DPA
Disabled Persons Assembly
DPTAC
Disabled Persons Transport Accessibility Committee
DRC
Disability Rights Commission
DRTF
Disability Rights Task Force
DSFA
Department of Social and Family Affairs
DTO
Dublin Transportation Office
ECAC
European Civil Aviation Conference
EDF
European Disability Federation
EEC
European Economic Community
EIDD
European Institute for Design and Disability
EIS
Environmental Impact Statement
ECMT
European Conference of Ministers of Transport
EMU
Electrical Multiple Units
ETA
Estimated Time of Arrival
EU
European Union
GDA
Greater Dublin Area
GIS
Geographic Information System
GPS
Global Positioning System
ICAO
International Civil Aviation Organisation
IE
Iarnród Éireann
IMO
International Maritime Organisation
IRU
International Road Transport Union
IWA
Irish Wheelchair Association
LRT
Light Rail Transit
LUAS
Speed in the Irish language
MACS
Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland
NAD
National Association of the Deaf
NCBI
National Council for the Blind of Ireland
NDA
National Disability Authority
NDP
National Development Plan
NRH
National Rehabilitation Hospital
NS
Nederlandse Spoorwegen
ONTR
Office of the National Taxi Regulator
OJ
Official Journal
PRM
Person with Reduced Mobility
PTAC
Public Transport Accessibility Committee
PSV
Public Service Vehicle
QBC
Quality Bus Corridor
RPA
Railway Procurement Agency
RPTOL
Road Passenger Transport Operator's Licence
RSPG
Railway Safety Principles and Guidance
RTI
Rural Transport Initiative
RTPI
Real Time Passenger Information
SBBS
Samenwerkende Belangenorganisaties van Blinden en Slechtzienden
STS
Special Transport Services
SVID
Swedish Industrial design Institute
TAC
Transport Advisory Committee in Northern Ireland
TCC
Transport Co-ordination Centre
TDC
Travel Despatch Centre
TIDE
Telematics for Disabled and Elderly People
TMC-I
Transport and Mobility Consultants - Ireland
UK
United Kingdom
USA
United States of America
VAT
Value Added Tax
VRT
Vehicle Registration Tax
VHF
Very High Frequency