With Dublin bus they all had to be folded down. There was no room for them unfolded even if they did manage to get on.
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You then run the very real risk of a confrontation developing,which has a high likelyhood of becoming physical.
Portraying the Busdriver as a contributing element to this is somewhat far from reality.
Once the passenger is aboard the Bus,the Driver and Company now have a very significant duty of care towards them.
I will not embark a Wheelchair user until I am satisfied that he/she can fully & safely access the designated Wheelchair Space.
Allowing that Wheelchair user to board,in the knowledge that their designated space is NOT clear is not a reasonable action (particularly from a professional driver)
Suggesting that a full size wheelchair,and a full size buggy should joust each other in the gangway will most certainly not end well ....for anybody concerned...including the other able bodied passengers.
As long as the intending passenger remains on the footpath,the Busdriver retains control over the situation.
Advising the disappointed passenger of the capacity situation,contacting Route Control and also advising them,before continuing with the journey to benefit passengers alreay on board.
The battle you seek,cannot be fought on the platform of a bus.
It can only be legislated for,and will certainly require the attention of the only agency tasked with enforcement of the Law in Ireland...An Garda Siochana.
Whether or not we,as a society,really need to go down that road is a totally different issue.
The reality,all over the World,is that mainstream Mass Public Transport strives to serve as broad a base as possible,but in the full knowledge that there will always be a demographic,for whom access cannot be guaranteed.
Perhaps renewed consideration of the suggestion put forward by then CIE Chairman GT Paul Conlon in 1984,might move the topic forward today....
CIE was a very early innovator in this area,as shown in the FFG built full-access vehicle which was used in the early 1980's in Dublin.
Encouraging shouting and boxing matches on Bus Platforms is about the WORST solution I can see for this problem ?
any reasonable person would of course fold a buggy. If an unreasonable person refuses to, all the poor driver can do is drive on. Agree with Alek, it's not up to the driver to referee a dispute.
That's just not true - the driver does have other options. He can drive on, or not drive on. He can just sit there and wait, or call the Gardai if required.
I have some sympathy with your position, and indeed, the driver can't be expected to get involved in any physical intervention.
The principle of accessibility limitations is accepted by all. For example, the current buses have one wheelchair space, so if two wheelchair users are waiting to get on, that limitation will kick in. The problem arises when the limitation occurs from misuse of the existing facilities.
I'm not sure if your suggestion of 'black taxi' service for parents with buggies is a great solution here either.
If it's OK for drivers to refuse access to wheelchair users, then surely it's OK for drivers to refuse access to parents with buggies who won't fold them down?
Dedicated wheelchair spaces must be given up by buggy users if a wheelchair user wishes to board.
When did it become acceptable to ignore this ?
Indeed,however in real time,the Bus is also carrying a bunch of other non-involved farepayers whose journey also has to be facilitated.Equally,in the real world a dispute about this access will not feature very high on the Garda Pulse systems prioritization.
Not alone are Busdrivers not expected to get involved,but Company Policy clearly outlines this.
As the Law currently stands,a Buggy User is not "misusing" any facility,as having paid their fare,they are fully entitled to occupy the Wheelchair Space.
Even with the latest changes in the UK,there is NO power granted to an Operator or Busdriver to FORCE such a person to vacate the position.
It's not actually my suggestion,but providing an on-call Taxi based wheelchair service was considered in the lead up to the purchase & introduction of the Low Floor Double Deck fleet in the late 1990's..AFAIR the disability representative groups were concerned that this was not providing access to mainstream public transport,however,my conversations with many wheelchair bound passsengers over the years would suggest the representative groups may have been a tad too quick in shutting down that idea.
I would quite regularly do just this.
If the spaces are occupied,as in 2 occupied buggies,then I will request any & all subsequent Buggies to be folded and stowed.
If the 3rd and subsequent buggy owner cannot/willnot fold then they do not board.
This scenario is actually the one most experienced by Busdrivers and Passengers alike,and the one which almost always results in bad tempered exchanges and sometimes physicality.
Some Busdrivers are "Quiet Lifers" are tend to allow as many buggies as present to them,on board.
This is all fine,as long as nothing goes wrong....when something does occur,then the same Buggy Pushing passenger so full of thanks & smiles for your consideration,will instantly remind you that if it was dangerous then why did you LET them board,as if they had known it was risky they would'nt have boarded.
The current situation,based as it is upon an expectation of Commonsense,Reasonableness,and Concern for others,is rapidly failing.
There needs to be a significant reappraisal of exactly what Mainstream Public Transport can reasonably and safely offer it's mainstream customers.
Life itself is compromised of compromises,in every direction,yet any attempt to seek compromise in this instance is immediately bound to be challenged !!
The word "must" is incorrect...it was thus in 2008 ,when the guidelines were first published and remains so today.
The operative term,in the absence of a legal right to enforce this obligation,is should,which is probably the most popular word in Irish-English....just read the "Rules of the Road" for further confirmation.
I was on traveling on a 122 two weeks ago, the bus was packed with people standing. A lady boarded on the SCR with a large buggy, but there was already a buggy on board. It was an older AX type bus with only one buggy space.
The lady insisted she could board with her buggy, the driver tried to explain he could not carry another and that the bus was overcrowded. She caused a scene and became very angry. The driver, to his credit, remained calm and switched off the engine. He explained he could not safely carry the second buggy. She proceeded to tell the driver, and the whole bus, that she knew her rights and then went about taking photos of the vehicle and driver. Eventually, she gave in and folded the buggy and the full bus of 90 passengers could continue their journey.
I think clearer signage on vechicles would assist drivers. The crap they are faced with is unreal. This lady struck me as someone who would only be too happy to point the finger at the driver if he allowed her buggy on and there was an accident.
Whether it's must or should, the reality is that anyone who ignores this deserves all the abuse they get.
Is it an common issue ?
A few years ago on the 121 I saw a wheelchair user, well he was in an electric mobility scooter but there ya go, refused boarding as there were two buggies on board. One of the buggies had a weeks shopping on it and was pushed on by a pensioner; the other sat unfolded by the Mum and kid who sat on the seat adjacent to the space. The OAP got off one stop later, the Mum and kid stayed on for two more stops.
Common sense from all parties needs to be applied in future.
The current DB policy states that buggy users must fold up if required.
Why would you want to segregate wheelchair users?
If you want to take a segregated approach, why not segregate buggy users?
So my suggestion is to simply do with the first buggy user what you currently do with the third buggy user - how difficult can it be?
In fairness, it looks like you're expecting ALL the compromising to be done by people with disabilities, no-one else.
Leo Varadkar is wrong on this. I dont think he has a full understanding of the type of scumbags that reside within the pale.
He has some sort of belief that all the people of Dublin has the same levels morals and decency as he does.
When in fact the place is full of knackers with no decency . Where some low life will literally shout and roar at an elderly or disabled person to move to aid their own comfort on the bus.
Dont get me wrong, people are great, but some people tend to slither out from under a rock each day.
It has to be legislated for.