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  • Close - ORR Consult RRBuses: February 14, 2020
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Author Topic: Accessible travel during rail replacement services (buses and coaches)  (Read 1291 times)
grahame
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« on: December 20, 2019, 01:33:26 pm »

From the Office of Rail and Road

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From 1 January 2020, the Public Service Vehicle Accessibility Regulations (PSVAR) come into effect for coaches, reflecting the importance of ensuring that disabled people, and in particular wheelchair users, are able to access the same local and scheduled bus and coach services as persons who do not have a disability or persons whose disability gives rise to different needs.

The vast majority of buses used for rail replacement are accessible (e.g. low floors and/or ramps for wheelchair users), however it is concerning that the opposite is true of coaches (where a wheelchair lift is required).

so

Quote
The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has today opened a consultation to revise its Accessible Travel Policy (ATP) Guidance to improve the availability of accessible vehicles for use by disabled passengers during rail disruption, and to ensure passengers know where accessible buses and coaches will be operated.

Although reducing rail replacement service would bring about a system which complies with the law after 1st Jan 2020, the ORR appreciates that saying "can't take wheelchairs, so can't take you, fit person, either" would badly impact passengers ... akin to the removal of all loos because they're not wheelchair accessible, thus providing no-one with a toilet:

Quote
Curtailing rail replacement services until more coaches are fully accessible would significantly reduce the ability for all passengers - including disabled passengers without mobility impairments - to travel during rail disruption, and heightens the risk of crowding and safety issues at stations.

Press release goes on to outline the ORR's objectives and set a close date on 14th Feb 2020 for the consultation
« Last Edit: December 20, 2019, 03:06:12 pm by grahame » Logged

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LiskeardRich
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« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2020, 10:24:49 pm »

Exemption has been extended until end of April, but operators have to apply for permission to use a non compliant vehicle
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eightf48544
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« Reply #2 on: January 24, 2020, 11:40:45 am »

Roger Ford has an article on this topic in Feb's Modern Railways.
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LiskeardRich
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« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2020, 04:21:15 pm »

Excluding national express and megabus fleet there is only 274 psvar coaches in the UK. The recent southern trains replacement needed over 100 vehicles, the recent Tiverton to Plymouth 75 vehicles on the Saturday. 
Coach companies use occasional rail work to fill blanks in their schedule with vehicles they use for their normal work. It isn’t their bread and butter of business for the infrequency it comes in and they don’t rely on it.
A look in various coach selling resources, cheapest psvar coach second hand is around 75000 plus VAT, Plaxton non psvar similar to those seen lined up at Plymouth today 15000 plus vat.
Coach companies don’t need the work so will just decline the work rather than investing an extra 60000 for occasional work. Psvar is not required for private Hire or closed door LA funded school buses which is most companies Main work and a 15000 Plaxton is more than suitable.
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« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2020, 11:10:24 pm »

Today’s rail replacement between Truro and Penzance was operated solely by First Kernow, and was 100% accessible with a mix of Truronian’s compliant coaches and buses from the local fleet.
The previous blockade over half term was also operated entirely by First Kernow with additional driver support from buses of Somerset, with only one non compliant coach (albeit a 3 year old luxury coach) seeing action all week.
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