Disabled traveller advice

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speedy_sticks

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May I ask how many here book and stick to a pre booked train you gave booked in 24 hours of travel? Would you be prepared to travel if you had to book 24 hours in advance EVERY time you wanted to travel?

How will your life be effected if you had to get to your destination by 2200? Of course, you may be allowed to get there later if you gave 24 hours notice of your plans.
 
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jopsuk

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It's another bit of "why it sucks to be disabled". You need to give notice to make sure that at unstaffed or lightly staffed stations there's arrangements in place to get you or off the train... especially in areas with no guards
 

CyrusWuff

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It's another bit of "why it sucks to be disabled". You need to give notice to make sure that at unstaffed or lightly staffed stations there's arrangements in place to get you or off the train... especially in areas with no guards

Though there's no guarantee that assistance will happen...If I had a pound for every time I'd seen a request come through for an assist at an unstaffed station which has resulted in us having to arrange a taxi because we couldn't get someone there to cover it, I'd be able to retire.

Particular favourites are when it's booked for a time before the earliest booking on time, or after the latest booking off time, generally on a Sunday.
 

hairyhandedfool

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May I ask how many here book and stick to a pre booked train you gave booked in 24 hours of travel? Would you be prepared to travel if you had to book 24 hours in advance EVERY time you wanted to travel?

How will your life be effected if you had to get to your destination by 2200? Of course, you may be allowed to get there later if you gave 24 hours notice of your plans.

There are people who commute on Advance tickets five days a week 48 weeks a year.
 

philthetube

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May I ask how many here book and stick to a pre booked train you gave booked in 24 hours of travel? Would you be prepared to travel if you had to book 24 hours in advance EVERY time you wanted to travel?

How will your life be effected if you had to get to your destination by 2200? Of course, you may be allowed to get there later if you gave 24 hours notice of your plans.

To complain about a situation and not make suggestions is pointless, this is not to say that there are genuine issues in what you are saying.

Plenty of people in the industry see this forum, I am sure it is monitored for various reasons, and suggestions will be noticed.

A lot has been done to help disabled travellers and there may be things which could be done to make things better, however just making and repeating a quote as you are doing, especially in appropriate places, achieves nothing, except on occasions gets people's backs up.

Having said that I hope that this thread stimulates genuine conversation and provides practical solutions to some issues which disabled people face.
 

Bletchleyite

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I'll be honest - if I was in a wheelchair but still able to drive, I would use all possible schemes to afford the best adapted car possible, and would give up travel by public transport completely.
 

TEW

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Of course it is extremely unfair that the industry requires disabled passengers give 24 hours notice, it's a turn up and go system for other people so why should we require some passengers to have to always plan their life in advance? Luckily where I work there is a guard on every train, so provided the station is accesible there is always someone to provide assistance.
 

tony6499

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Another problem is a lot of severely disabled people have lost their motability cars thanks to the PIP fiasco and are being forced to use public transport at a time the government are now making it harder to use.
 

ComUtoR

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Of course it is extremely unfair that the industry requires disabled passengers give 24 hours notice, it's a turn up and go system for other people so why should we require some passengers to have to always plan their life in advance? Luckily where I work there is a guard on every train, so provided the station is accesible there is always someone to provide assistance.

Does it "require" 24hrs notice ?

We have a turn up and go system and many cope without any trouble whatsoever. Other than an unstaffed station I think you could wheel up at any of our stations with about 10 minutes spare and still get your train.
 

aformeruser

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If I'm travelling on Advance tickets then I have to stick to services I chose weeks or months earlier even if I am ready to travel back an hour or more sooner than I envisaged.

On some occasions my travel plans have changed due to circumstances outside of my control. For instance, I planned to travel one day but didn't due to illness while on another occasion the event I was planning to go to was postponed and I only told the evening before.

On one occasion a couple of months ago I went to the station to find the ticket office (which should have been open) closed due to a staff shortage. That could be an issue for disabled passengers on DOO routes where there isn't a second member of on board staff.
 

mbreckers

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As someone who travels with a wheelchair bound person, we have found it easier since we gave up with the Passenger Assistance bookings and started just turning up for trains (still giving the ScotRail recommended 15 minutes before departure but)

It's not so bad for us as we normally travel from staffed station (Motherwell, Glasgow Central, Edinburgh Waverley, Dalmuir etc.).

Most of the times we would book in advance, then turn up and find out that station/train staff hadn't been told of the booking, and only the staff at the terminating station had been told, which kind of defeats the point of making the booking in the first place.

If another wheelchair user turns up without a booking and you have booked assistance, you still lose the wheelchair space if they get there first. And in the words of Passenger Assistance: "You would need to wait for the next train". Even if that next train is an hour and a half later.

Or the best one, that happened last Sunday, when Motherwell was closed for resignalling and track maintenance, I phoned in advance (like four days in advance) to arrange transport (wheelchair cant do bus replacement services) and the Passenger Assistance operator booked us a taxi from Motherwell to Bridgeton to connect with the train we needed.

Bridgeton is not wheelchair accessible, if I had not known this my friend would have turned up and found him stuck on the road with no way to get the attention of station staff.

Five phone calls to Passenger Assistance later and they still could not grasp the concept that Bridgeton was not wheelchair accessible.

Ended up just going to Motherwell where the staff there actually knew what they were doing, knew Bridgeton was not accessible and just arranged us a taxi to take us all the way to Dalmuir.

To sum up, if the stations your using are staffed, just turn up. If they arent, book and cross your fingers.
 

Blindtraveler

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Im tending to find that certain TOCs are caring less and less about the service they provide over the phone for passenger assist and as above iether providing half a service or none at all, leaving it down to station staff. This whilst fine in theory doesnt always work as if you show up at the wrong time you may not get any and worse still if you show up at certain stations theyl be rood to you and deliver a surman on pre booking

Naming no names but I am currently having a dispute with a certain major station for doing just that but then when at a later date, failing to provide booked assistance and denying knoledge of it despite ref number and email confirmation
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
If you want practicle solutions to this it is, to me bluddy obvious, stop de staffing our railway. Lets have open booking offices, a 2nd member of safetey chritical staff on every traim, staff on platforms and gatelines and manning imformation points on major stations and a TFL and Southeasten type attidude to the situation
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Oh and for certain TOCs, how about an end to the closed for business atitude for providing help at unstaffed stations despite 2 or more days advance booking? This has happened to me several times and the general response has been find another way of traveling/dont travel, the solution to which has generally been to get the bus
 

jopsuk

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there's swathes of stations that are either completely unmanned or just have someone behind a desk selling tickets on weekday mornings on DOO lines. Manning all of these first to last with multiple members of staff (ticket office+platforms) would be very expensive, especially where there's no existing station building (staff MUST have facilities even if passengers don't). Staffing (for example) Waterbeach, a couple of DOO platforms used by ~380k passengers per year on a 1tph service, from first (0536) to last (2346) with enough people to ensure assistance can be provided on the off chance someone needs it? Be realistic. And Waterbeach isn't that odd.
 

Agent_c

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If you want practicle solutions to this it is, to me bluddy obvious, stop de staffing our railway. Lets have open booking offices, a 2nd member of safetey chritical staff on every traim, staff on platforms and gatelines and manning imformation points on major stations and a TFL and Southeasten type attidude to the situation

How dare you suggest common sense. That's outrageous.
 

Blindtraveler

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How dare you suggest common sense. That's outrageous.

lol

I should maybe clarrify I wasnt suggesting we had multiple staff at every shack and even if there were the option to do this its not the small ones with the problen. The doo debate has relevance here as, as said upthread, a 2nd member of safety trained staff on every train, in other words a guard would solve the issue if the passenger assist end of things worked propperly and new communication methods used to allow people to travel with a couple hours warning

at staffed stations a London approach would and already does work and if pax wanting unstaffed stations were helped with sufficiant notice or taxied at shorter notice rather than the ee couldnt give a ****/your causing us an inconvenince one we currently have in many cases this issue would be half the size it is
 

TEW

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Does it "require" 24hrs notice ?

We have a turn up and go system and many cope without any trouble whatsoever. Other than an unstaffed station I think you could wheel up at any of our stations with about 10 minutes spare and still get your train.

In some cases, yes it does require 24 hours notice. Who's going to provide assistance at an unmanned station with DOO trains if you turn up 10 minutes before departure? Of course if you're travellng from manned stations on manned trains assistance can be provided without notice.
 

speedy_sticks

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What happens if people like me decide to sue because I couldn't get on or off the train because of driver only train even if prior travel notice was given?

These cases aren't cheap.
 

Agent_c

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What happens if people like me decide to sue because I couldn't get on or off the train because of driver only train even if prior travel notice was given?

These cases aren't cheap.

Didn't someone say earlier that railways fall outside the DDA?
 

aformeruser

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Didn't someone say earlier that railways fall outside the DDA?

They don't fall outside the equality act.

The Railways were given a 31st December 2019 deadline in the DDA, which has transferred to the Equalities Act. The reason was because the 1980s stock was expected to either been withdrawn or had a major refurbishment and life extension program by then.
 

Haydn1971

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The Railways were given a 31st December 2019 deadline in the DDA, which has transferred to the Equalities Act. The reason was because the 1980s stock was expected to either been withdrawn or had a major refurbishment and life extension program by then.


Always makes me chuckle at the rose tinted view of the future that the people who drafted that had ;) haha
 
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The Railways were given a 31st December 2019 deadline in the DDA, which has transferred to the Equalities Act. The reason was because the 1980s stock was expected to either been withdrawn or had a major refurbishment and life extension program by then.

Interesting. So, in summary, the railway network is exempt from both the DDA and the Equality Act. But what's the plan for the approaching cliff-face of 1st January 2020? Maybe the TOCs regard it as more of a little jump?
 

mbreckers

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Interesting. So, in summary, the railway network is exempt from both the DDA and the Equality Act. But what's the plan for the approaching cliff-face of 1st January 2020? Maybe the TOCs regard it as more of a little jump?

I dont think exempt would be the right word here, I think it would be better to describe it as a reasonable time to adjust their facilities to meet the DDA (now the Equality Act)
 

aformeruser

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Interesting. So, in summary, the railway network is exempt from both the DDA and the Equality Act. But what's the plan for the approaching cliff-face of 1st January 2020? Maybe the TOCs regard it as more of a little jump?

I dont think exempt would be the right word here, I think it would be better to describe it as a reasonable time to adjust their facilities to meet the DDA (now the Equality Act)

Yes a new train should meet all the requirements and if any work is done to an old train the work should meet the requirements where applicable. For instance, the Northern units have passenger doors which are a different colour to the rest of the train even though they'll probably get a new livery or be withdrawn (as applicable) by 2019.
 
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