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Disabled passenger hurt while alighting EMT service

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northwichcat

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ITV said:
Rail bosses have launched an investigation after a passenger in a wheelchair was ‘let go’ by a guard halfway down a ramp before careering into a set of metal seats.

Joseph Ryan was left with severe bruising after his chair rolled down the ramp off a train at Manchester Piccadilly in front of shocked passengers. His chair was also damaged following the incident on Bank Holiday Monday.

Joseph, from Crumpsall , travelled back to the city centre from Warrington following a day out with a friend.

He says that when a member of East Midlands Trains staff attempted to help him get off the train, he was ‘let go’ on the ramp before crashing into seats on the platform.

The incident happened at around 2.40pm on platform 13, with dozens of shocked passengers looking on.

Joseph, 47, who suffers from a bone tissue disorder, fractured his hip following a fall earlier this month.

He said the incident has left him with two ‘huge’ bruises on his leg - and aggravated his already painful hip injury.

East Midlands Trains chiefs said a full investigation has been launched. Joseph, who says the firm has offered to replace his bent wheelchair, said:
“They told me it’s being treated as a very serious health and safety incident. “The guard just let me go halfway down the ramp and I went flying into the metal chairs on the platform. “I couldn’t believe it, I was in shock. Other people were watching. “The guard didn’t say anything to me afterwards, which shocked me even more."

An East Midlands Trains spokesperson said: “We were sorry to hear about the problems Mr Ryan had at Manchester Piccadilly station over the weekend. “The safety of our customers is always our absolute priority. We have spoken directly to Mr Ryan and assured him that a full and thorough investigation is already underway to understand precisely what happened. We will update Mr Ryan as soon as the investigation has concluded.”

http://www.itv.com/news/granada/2016-09-01/passenger-hurt-after-guard-lets-go-of-his-wheelchair/

Offloading a wheelchair from a 158 on to platform 13 or 14 at Piccadilly probably isn't the easiest job but it must have been done successfully loads of times before.
 
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GrimsbyPacer

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I hate the way wheelchair users are treated on the railway, not only do the trains have less space than a typical bus for wheelchairs resulting in gangway positions for them and isolation, the trains are tight to get onto and off. Some station staff insist on charging full price for a wheelchair user and/or the carer when both should be half price. You have to be the last one off meaning missed connections, it's like they think of them as luggage.

But the worst is often that no one bothers to help wheelchair users on and off trains, now I discover that when they do they let you roll off and aren't even concerned! I've seen and heard alot of guards moaning about wheelchair users (although the rude people only notice the chair ofcourse) and not being careful, but this is terrible, EMT should pay compenation for the injury and humiliation caused, this would of made him feel more helpless than ever.

I know they are good guard people (EMT Lincoln for example), but every thing seems to be extra work for the disabled everywhere, it's about time we had equal accessibillity, large ticket barriers are often the furthest away and the footbridge with the lift is further from the train, it's totally unfair, we have a train service to Gainsborough Central on Saturday, but to take a wheechair user out of the station is impossible.

Something needs to change nationally.
Maybe a ramp like on those National Express Coaches for trains, that might be safer.
 
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Bletchleyite

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I hate the way wheelchair users are treated on the railway, not only do the trains have less space than a typical bus for wheelchairs resulting in gangway positions for them and isolation, the trains are tight to get onto and off. Some station staff insist on charging full price for a wheelchair user and/or the carer when both should be half price.

I've never heard of this, and it would make the DSB Railcard rather redundant. Do you have a reference to it?
 

6Gman

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But the worst is often that no one bothers to help wheelchair users on and off trains, now I discover that when they do they let you roll off and aren't even concerned!

One incident and we don't know the full circumstances.
 

Sprinter153

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I've never heard of this, and it would make the DSB Railcard rather redundant. Do you have a reference to it?

This page shows the benefits available to non-DPRC holders with a disability:
http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/stations_destinations/44965.aspx

It only applies to Anytime fares. They issue as D33/D50 discount codes on Avantix. Sometimes an Off Peak or Super Off Peak without the discount is significantly cheaper, and cheaper still with a DPRC.
 
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PHILIPE

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Some years ago now, Dame Danni Grey Thompson who is wheelchair bound and a champion for disabled people, arrived at Kings Cross from the north just after midnight and her booked assistance was conspicuous by it's absence. She was forced to try and maneuver her chair and herself so far when a staff passer-by spotted her and assisted. I don't think a satisfactory reply was ever received from GNER who just tried to brush the facts off for the failure..
 

AlterEgo

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I've never heard of this, and it would make the DSB Railcard rather redundant. Do you have a reference to it?

It's only for wheelchair users. How would it make the DSB railcard redundant?
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Surely wheelchair users can propel themselves down the ramp?

What makes you think all wheelchair users can do this?
 

headshot119

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Only points I'll make are...

We've only heard one side of the story, I really don't believe a guard would let a wheelchair go down a ramp, watch the passenger crash into a set of seats, and then not say anything at all to the passenger.

Manchester Picadilly is a Network Rail operated station, and I've always seen NR staff putting wheelchair passengers on and off trains on 13/14, but perhaps that's only if the person has booked assistance in advance?
 

Harbornite

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Here are said comments. What a lovely bunch of people.

1 day ago
MancGuy16
££££££££££££ another compo claim!!!!!
ReplyShare00


1 day ago
LindaDrake
this kind of wheelchair isnt meant to be self propelled ! it has to be pushed by somebody, anyone can see that, does this person think we are all daft !!! where on earth are the two huge bruises ? this story is complete fabrication and i hope east midlands trains are quick to realise this
ReplyShare20

1 day ago
Tabletennis
How on earth does he manage to get by on his own with the wheels so far away to reach obviously trying to get as much compensation has he can they have apologised should have had a carer with him replace the wheelchair with larger wheels so he can't try and claim again more important news going on at the moment
ReplyShare30

1 day ago
Mulberry2016
Tough luck. Partly his own stupid fault. Move on and accept it instead of blabbing to the press
ReplyShare30

1 day ago
Ap2134
It was an accident - they happen. The train operator has apologised and is buying you a new wheel chair to replaced your damaged one. Why go to the local rag about this? What more do you want? Oh that's right - compo!!
ReplyShare30

1 day ago
Alfiethewonderdog
I smell a compensation claim.
ReplyShare50

1 day ago
Highlander10
Victim No! Has the face of a Chancer who exploits any opportunity to further their own ends.
ReplyShare1 reply60


2 hours ago
MancGuy16
he is, i know him
ReplyShare00

1 day ago
cocobozo
just another compo case... move along please nothing to see here.
ReplyShare62

1 day ago
Shorty1980
Must have super long arm to reach those wheels!!...or does he use his sticks to ski the wheelchair along where he's going!! Crowd funding page on the way!
ReplyShare74

1 day ago
zilchinn
Penny for the guy
ReplyShare42

2 days ago
Mike In Manchester
Why would any wheelchair user travel on their own if they could not possibly reach the wheels? If this picture is the wheelchair used? This wheelchair in the picture does have brakes but they cannot be reached by the user and is only allowed to be used with a carer. This will now have serious implications for all other wheelchair users. Why should railway staff help , when you are clearly travelling on your own in a chair that is not for for purpose? It would be fit if you had an assistant. How could you possibly travel any distance on your own? Fair play to the staff for helping in the first place. I really hope this doesnt affect your help and generosity in the future. For east midlands to offer to replace the chair is way too much compensation.
The health and safety issue is the users fault from the very beginning, to blame others after, is what is really shocking.
Before anyone has a go at me for having these thoughts, I work with the disabled and special needs and they will be so annoyed and angry at this man, This man needs a reality check, Not a PAY CHEQUE!!


imort
Well spotted..the charlatan


Highlander10
Totally agree. He put himself in jeopardy by using a wheelchair which was not fit for purpose. Had he been drinking by any chance! How did he get to the train station in the first place.



Byeek
"Why would any wheelchair user travel on their own if they could not possibly reach the wheels?"

Perhaps he was in a different wheelchair? I find it really sad that rather than lambaste the eejit who let go, we are blaming the victim. "There is no such thing as society [where people look out for each other]," she said. Too right - sadly.


Mike In Manchester
Perhaps he was in a different wheelchair?, Thats why I asked if this picture is correct? Maybe he could have travelled on his own by using the wheels and having full use of the brakes?. If he was in a suitable chair, why did he need assistance? Maybe because of the slope - Who Knows? What this story will possibly do is to stop genuine people with certain needs from receiving possible help from staff members because of the fear of compensation. Maybe in light of this - The station may stop wheelchair users travelling on their own? Under the grounds of health and safety? Maybe before they travel - they will have to conduct their own risk assesment? Genuine bonafide people will suffer because of this. Lets hope he gets his chair straightened and he can go on his merry way (with an assistant).


Eink
Does he have brakes on his wheelchair?



AndyStone
The bruises would be much larger if he had smashed into metal seating, if you look at the photo closely they are multiple scabby wounds and not bruises.
 

HMS Ark Royal

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I admit to having some interest in this given my mother is a wheelchair user and at first I thought what a failure by the EMT staff. On looking again, the injuries as pictured do not seem to be telling the full story as the bruises indicate a breaking of skin thats scabbed over - and nothing to cause that was reported.

I presume the gentleman was travelling in a doubled up 158 as the only metal seats, according to the station map are at the mayfield end of P13/14 - all other seats are in little shacks or huts
 

TimG

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It's only for wheelchair users. How would it make the DSB railcard redundant?
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---


What makes you think all wheelchair users can do this?

I don't, but surely it's not that different from going up and down the equivalent ramp at a shop, for example. If you can't do it, surely it's time to get some electric assistance...
 

AlterEgo

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Some of the comments in the article are nasty, but others correctly point out that the gentleman doesn't have any "huge bruises" visible in the supplied photo. It's no wonder people are throwing the compo card at him.
 

J-2739

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Some of the comments in the article are nasty, but others correctly point out that the gentleman doesn't have any "huge bruises" visible in the supplied photo. It's no wonder people are throwing the compo card at him.

Maybe because they didn't have a picture of him with huge bruises in the photo.
 

Helvellyn

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I hate the way wheelchair users are treated on the railway, not only do the trains have less space than a typical bus for wheelchairs resulting in gangway positions for them and isolation, the trains are tight to get onto and off.
Trains have a long service life, and a lot of the fleet out there wasn't built to the standards that are in place today. We have trains from the 1970s and 1980s still running. The Equality Act specifies a number of modifications that must happen by 2020. Yes, that is a few years off but it is because so many trains needed either upgrading or replaced. It is why Pacers and 153s are likely to be gone - pretty much life-expired and easier to replace than upgrade.

You have to be the last one off meaning missed connections, it's like they think of them as luggage.
Staff have to deploy a ramp. They might not be able to be at the door straight away (I work 12-car trains as a Guard and whilst I will aim to be at the correct coach to be ready with the ramp sometimes you can't). Plus you can't count on the courtesy of every other passenger - alighting or boarding. I've put a ramp down before and had people just start walking up/down it! That is not the fault of the railway or its staff.

But the worst is often that no one bothers to help wheelchair users on and off trains, now I discover that when they do they let you roll off and aren't even concerned!
I can't comment for other TOCs but SWT has a Guard on every train. For me, given that a lot of stations don't have platform staff, I'm more than happy to be assisting wheelchair users.

I know they are good guard people (EMT Lincoln for example), but every thing seems to be extra work for the disabled everywhere, it's about time we had equal accessibillity, large ticket barriers are often the furthest away and the footbridge with the lift is further from the train, it's totally unfair.
On this one I will be blunt. A lot of stations are over a hundred years old. When new footbridges with lifts are installed (and there is an "Access for all scheme" funding a lot of these) they have to be built taking into account existing station layouts. There isn't money to do wholesale demolitions to put new lifts/bridges right be entrances/exits. The extra wide ticket gates are also not just for wheelchair users but people with bikes, buggies and luggage. They are at the side of most gatelines because that is where staff are to help. The normal gates are designed for quick throughput, so you don't want the staffed gate in the middle where people can crowd round, block the flow of exiting passengers, etc. It's a compromise of sorts, but at the end of the day again a lot of gates are installed in old stations rather than something built from scratch. There is not a bottomless pit of money to make every station the ideal layout with perfect facilities.
 
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I would assume the wheelchair has got brakes. I know little of unloading wheelchairs, but I would have thought that the user would assist by applying the brakes to enable a slow decent down the ramp?
 

HMS Ark Royal

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I would assume the wheelchair has got brakes. I know little of unloading wheelchairs, but I would have thought that the user would assist by applying the brakes to enable a slow decent down the ramp?

Assuming the wheelchair in the incident is of the same type as the man is shown in the article sitting in, there is no gentle application of the brakes - they must be pushed firmly in/down with a little "bump" to confirm they have engaged. Putting the brakes on to just before the "bump" would have no effect at all
 

theironroad

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I hate the way wheelchair users are treated on the railway, not only do the trains have less space than a typical bus for wheelchairs resulting in gangway positions for them and isolation, the trains are tight to get onto and off. Some station staff insist on charging full price for a wheelchair user and/or the carer when both should be half price. You have to be the last one off meaning missed connections, it's like they think of them as luggage.

But the worst is often that no one bothers to help wheelchair users on and off trains, now I discover that when they do they let you roll off and aren't even concerned! I've seen and heard alot of guards moaning about wheelchair users (although the rude people only notice the chair ofcourse) and not being careful, but this is terrible, EMT should pay compenation for the injury and humiliation caused, this would of made him feel more helpless than ever.

I know they are good guard people (EMT Lincoln for example), but every thing seems to be extra work for the disabled everywhere, it's about time we had equal accessibillity, large ticket barriers are often the furthest away and the footbridge with the lift is further from the train, it's totally unfair, we have a train service to Gainsborough Central on Saturday, but to take a wheechair user out of the station is impossible.

Something needs to change nationally.
Maybe a ramp like on those National Express Coaches for trains, that might be safer.

I appreciate that wheelchair access to trains and stations isn't perfect, but I think you do a great disservice to the hundreds of guards and station staff who day in day out help wheelchair users safely and happily board/exit trains and stations.
 

61653 HTAFC

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From my reading of the excerpt of the MEN article (So I may have misinterpreted) I get the impression that the gentleman was using the wheelchair temporarily due to a hip injury (though with an underlying condition), so would perhaps have not been as familiar with its properties and behaviour as someone who is a permanent wheelchair user. If this is the case it may have been a factor in the unfortunate incident.

This thread does serve as a reminder of the 3rd rule of the internet: NEVER read the comments!
 
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TheEdge

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I know they are good guard people (EMT Lincoln for example), but every thing seems to be extra work for the disabled everywhere, it's about time we had equal accessibillity, large ticket barriers are often the furthest away and the footbridge with the lift is further from the train, it's totally unfair, we have a train service to Gainsborough Central on Saturday, but to take a wheechair user out of the station is impossible.

As Helvellyn has said pretty much everything I can I just want to ask how would you do it or do it better than existing solutions?

Bear in mind that you cannot use lifts at unstaffed stations and NR are against any new flat crossings. And lets be realistic about the wide scale demolition and rebuilding of stations.
 

GrimsbyPacer

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I am sorry at how my conment came out.
I'm more than sure most guards are fantastic, they are a few who have a bad day like in every field.

But my main point was about a lack of organisating new ease of access facilities for wheelchair uses. Such as new ramps (like NatEx), more staff, bigger door-ed trains etc.
Sorry for any offense caused, I know guards have lots of important jobs, it's just last time my Mum went on a train trip without me I felt gutted when I heard no one showed up at Hull to help her onboard despite advance notice.

In respect to the comments about the chair.
Big wheeled ones cost more than the little wheeled one (the brakes aren't easy to reach unless you're made of rubber).
Electrics are very very unaffordable for many, also they often lack a self powered big wheel option.

This situation however, only looks suspicious as nothing was said, a simply "I'm so sorry my hand just slipped" or similar generic comment would of made the guard here look less like an evil villian and more like a clumsy worker.
 
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dviner

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This situation however, only looks suspicious as nothing was said, a simply "I'm so sorry my hand just slipped" or similar generic comment would of made the guard here look less like an evil villian and more like a clumsy worker.

Possibilities:

  • The guard was too stunned by what happened to say anything
  • The guard was following "don't admin liability" rules
  • The guard did say something, but it wasn't heard (as that doesn't make a good story
 

theironroad

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I am sorry at how my conment came out.
I'm more than sure most guards are fantastic, they are a few who have a bad day like in every field.

But my main point was about a lack of organisating new ease of access facilities for wheelchair uses. Such as new ramps (like NatEx), more staff, bigger door-ed trains etc.
Sorry for any offense caused, I know guards have lots of important jobs, it's just last time my Mum went on a train trip without me I felt gutted when I heard no one showed up at Hull to help her onboard despite advance notice.

In respect to the comments about the chair.
Big wheeled ones cost more than the little wheeled one (the brakes aren't easy to reach unless you're made of rubber).
Electrics are very very unaffordable for many, also they often lack a self powered big wheel option.

This situation however, only looks suspicious as nothing was said, a simply "I'm so sorry my hand just slipped" or similar generic comment would of made the guard here look less like an evil villian and more like a clumsy worker.

Thank-you for your clarification.
 

Cowley

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I used to work with all kinds of people with different disabilities when I worked for Social Services years ago and have plenty of experience manhandling awkward heavy wheelchairs onto buses, trains, into buildings etc.
What struck me about this story is that I had proper training to do it and it was still difficult at times. There are certain things that are obvious like as someone said earlier reversing down a ramp so that you keep control.
The railway needs to be fully accessible but isn't really set up for it as it is and it'll take time for it to happen.
I feel very sorry for the member of staff involved in this, one mistake and going through hell right now I should imagine.
The chap in the wheelchair was obviously hurt but seems to be ok, it could've been very much worse had he ended up God forbid on the track.
Lessons to be learnt by all I think.
 

Lockwood

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Wheelchair brakes are usually on or off, rather than slightly on. They tend to work on the tyre, compressing it against the rim, rather than acting directly on the rim or hub.

You should always be at the bottom of the ramp whilst assisting a wheelchair user. This let's you use you as a partial brake if needed.

It is quite easy to put your back out going up a ramp if you are either not careful, have a larger person, or both.

I hate to say it, but patients getting some unexpected free wheeling is not an isolated incident. Not sure why this incident was newsworthy as opposed to any of the other times.


Side note: Phone ran out of battery writing this. Turned it back on, browser opened with forums and exactly where I left off. Yay.
 
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