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West Cork Connect - New Service

  • 26-02-2020 12:53pm
    #1
    Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,079 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk
    Moderator


    A new service has started up serving the West of Cork from Cork City:

    https://westcorkconnect.ie/

    Skibbereen – Leap – Connonagh – Rosscarbery – Lisavaird – Clonakilty – Ballinascarthy – Bandon – Innishannon – Cork CitySkibbereen – Leap – Connonagh – Rosscarbery – Lisavaird – Clonakilty – Ballinascarthy – Bandon – Innishannon – Cork City


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 411 ✭✭ ITV2
    Registered User


    Doesn't look Wheelchair accessible to me ?


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 11,286 Mod ✭✭✭✭ devnull
    Moderator


    ITV2 wrote: »
    Doesn't look Wheelchair accessible to me ?

    Indeed - it's my belief that no new bus or coach services should be licensed without this provision.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,681 ✭✭✭ patrickc
    Registered User


    from their FAQ's

    Q. Do you operate wheelchair accessible vehicles?
    A. West Cork Connect does not have wheelchair accessible vehicles.


  • Registered Users Posts: 411 ✭✭ ITV2
    Registered User


    no if you need to use a wheelchair you're not welcome aboard.. is it 2001 or 2020?


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,999 ✭✭✭✭ AlekSmart
    Registered User


    ITV2 wrote: »
    no if you need to use a wheelchair you're not welcome aboard.. is it 2001 or 2020?

    Yea,it's a significant failure on the part of the NTA.

    The arguement about technology and cost no longer holds after 20+ years of Accessible Vehicles in Stage Carriage work.

    We (and the NTA) also need to accept that being disabled does not actually require possession or use of a Wheelchair !! :(


    Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one.

    Charles Mackay (1812-1889)



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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 11,286 Mod ✭✭✭✭ devnull
    Moderator


    AlekSmart wrote: »
    Yea,it's a significant failure on the part of the NTA.

    The arguement about technology and cost no longer holds after 20+ years of Accessible Vehicles in Stage Carriage work

    I do not understand how the operator has purchased a 2020 coach without any wheelchair access. That to me is plain wrong. That is a choice that has been made by an operator and one which I think is completely wrong.

    However low floor coaches have not been in wide supply for anything like 20 years and a coach is not a bus and I do think that we need to give operators a little longer to transform their existing coach route fleets on existing routes.

    Therefore I would propose the following:
    - Any licensed bus service must be low floor wheelchair accessible (effective as soon as possible)
    - Any new licensed coach route must be low floor wheelchair accessible (effective now)
    - Any new brand new vehicle must be wheelchair accessible (effective now)
    - All coaches on licensed services wheelchair accessible by 31st December 2022.

    The NTA's proposals that non low floor buses should be allowed to 2023 and that non low floor coaches should be allowed until 2026 are simply unacceptable and the first three items above should be implemented either now or as soon as possible and the coach deadline brought forward by 3 years.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,999 ✭✭✭✭ AlekSmart
    Registered User


    Interestingly enough,it is possible to source examples of 'Accessible' Coaching stock as far back as 2001.

    https://www.route-one.net/directory-vehicle_sale/listing/2001-y-bova-fhd-12-370-futura-49-seat-wheelchair-accessible-executive-coach/

    Roughish,and requiring work,but out there on the market for many years now.

    By 2006,there were a variety of coachbuilders offering a variety of Accessibility Solutions,not all of which were reliable (as can be seen from the number of Ramp U/S notations).

    The arrival of the Caetano Levante body into the National Express fleet was a real watershed moment for the industry in the U.K. and forced other manufacturers to follow that lead.

    From a Regulators perspective,availability over a period of 14 years,now generally regarded as a vehicle's written down service-life,should by now have made it an imperative for ALL new NTA contracts.

    Either the Irish Authority is fully behind the principle of accessibility or it is not....there should by now,be no ambiguity.


    Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one.

    Charles Mackay (1812-1889)



  • Registered Users Posts: 24,142 ✭✭✭✭ Mrs OBumble
    Registered User


    Interesting that BE is finally getting some serious competition in Cork, and the only comments on here are bitching about wheelchair accessibillity.

    Any thoughts on the viability of the service? The need for it? Likely impacts on BE? Known performance of the operator?


  • Registered Users Posts: 201 ✭✭ mickmmc
    Registered User


    I worked in the area in the past.

    Positives for the service:

    1) Earlier start - 6:15am leaving Skibbereen (arrival in Cork City at 7:55am) v 6:45am BE 237 PSO (arrival in Cork city 8:40am - too late to avoid traffic?)

    2) Competitive fares - €18 return from Skibbereen v € 32.20 BE 237 (per website) - a saving of €14.20 per day return.

    3) Comfortable coach - new 201C Higer coach for a 81km journey from Skibbereen (162km return trip).

    4) Positive feedback on facebook - 1st time since 1937 that a private operator has operated a Skibbereen - Cork service.

    The service is operated by Dave Long, a Skibbereen based private coach operator.

    I was in the area in the Summer and I heard BE were leaving passengers behind in Rosscarbery, as the bus was full at that stage. The locals were not happy and it was difficult for BE bus drivers. The next 237 service after 6:45am is 8:55am from Skibbereen. That is the background to the new service being set up.


  • Registered Users Posts: 411 ✭✭ ITV2
    Registered User


    Interesting that BE is finally getting some serious competition in Cork, and the only comments on here are bitching about wheelchair accessibillity.

    Any thoughts on the viability of the service? The need for it? Likely impacts on BE? Known performance of the operator?

    hopefully you or any one you know is never is a wheelchair and needs to use their service, it is 2020.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 24,142 ✭✭✭✭ Mrs OBumble
    Registered User


    ITV2 wrote: »
    hopefully you or any one you know is never is a wheelchair and needs to use their service, it is 2020.

    Except in particularly flat countries, buses aren't generally great for wheelchair users: travelling up or down hills from home to the bus stop is simply too difficult and / or dangerous. People with limited mobility need transport solutions, buses are only a very small part of these.

    And in the meantime, the vast majority of the population aren't mobility-impaired.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,079 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk
    Moderator


    It is definitely a pity that this new service, with a brand new coach, is not wheelchair accessible.

    Having said that, do keep in mind that BE's service is far from perfect in this regard too. Only 78% of BE's commuter and intercity coaches are wheelchair accessible. A wheelchair user needs to notify BE 24 hours in advance of travelling. BE then needs to remove four seats from the coach, the lift mechanism is big and cumbersome and it can't be operated off of many rural bus stops due to lack of enough space for the lift to operate.

    The truth of the matter, wheelchair accessibility sucks outside of the cities (not that it is that great there either).

    In fairness to the NTA, they do seem to be making an effort in general in this regard. Since Go Ahead took over the Dublin Commuter routes from BE, they have used only fully accessible, low floor vehicles, either Double Deckers or the low floor split single decker coaches. These have the advantage of not needing the complicated lift, dedicated wheelchair bay (no need to remove seats), can take wheelchair users out of difficult rural stops which lack space and have a lot more low floor accessible seats that are useful for other mobility impaired users (remember there are more then just wheelchair users).

    Some might argue that high floor coaches, with one wheelchair space and a complicated lift, is more hand waving to accessibility then really that useful.

    It is a complicated topic and it doesn't have an easy answer for now unfortunately.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 2,770 ✭✭✭ GT89
    Banned


    Suspended now due to Covid 19. Website is dismal also.

    https://westcorkconnect.ie


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,142 ✭✭✭✭ Mrs OBumble
    Registered User


    GT89 wrote: »
    Suspended now due to Covid 19. Website is dismal also.

    https://westcorkconnect.ie

    Timing is a real shame for them, hope they can hold on and restart in the recovery.


    Dismal website in what way? I found everything I wanted to know easily enough.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 2,770 ✭✭✭ GT89
    Banned


    Timing is a real shame for them, hope they can hold on and restart in the recovery.


    Dismal website in what way? I found everything I wanted to know easily enough.

    Timetable and fare information is unreadable for most people the print is so small. Can't download it as a PDF or even zoom in their website. Might work on a desktop but not a phone. I would have thought a timetable was easily accesible was fundamental for a bus service.

    Also the branding is a little misleading the airplane logo may suggest it serves Cork Airport which it does not and the mention of Aircoach may suggest some sort of through ticketing was available which does not appear to be the case. As for the service itself I see how it can be viable as the BE 237 is more frequent.


  • Registered Users Posts: 290 ✭✭ Geog1234
    Registered User


    I was checking the timetable via a PDF on their site the other day - I had a look for you to quote the link but it no longer seems to be on the site.

    I think they're planning to offer through ticketing in the future in conjunction with Aircoach.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,142 ✭✭✭✭ Mrs OBumble
    Registered User


    GT89 wrote: »
    Timetable and fare information is unreadable for most people the print is so small. Can't download it as a PDF or even zoom in their website. Might work on a desktop but not a phone. I would have thought a timetable was easily accesible was fundamental for a bus service.

    Also the branding is a little misleading the airplane logo may suggest it serves Cork Airport which it does not and the mention of Aircoach may suggest some sort of through ticketing was available which does not appear to be the case. As for the service itself I see how it can be viable as the BE 237 is more frequent.

    I managed to read it, despite my middle aged eyesight.

    BE don't guarantee seating even if people have booked, and were leaving a lot of people behind.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,079 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk
    Moderator


    I have to say, there website looks really nice and I have no problem reading it on either desktop or mobile. Looks nice and modern, reactive design.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 2,770 ✭✭✭ GT89
    Banned


    bk wrote: »
    I have to say, there website looks really nice and I have no problem reading it on either desktop or mobile. Looks nice and modern, reactive design.

    Maybe on ios but not android devices or maybe just my device


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,079 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk
    Moderator


    GT89 wrote: »
    Maybe on ios but not android devices or maybe just my device

    Yep, very possibly, I tried it on iPhone, could well be problematic on Android or perhaps a particular Android phone (there is such a massive variety of Android phones, resolutions, etc. in the Android world that getting development right for that is a lot more complicated).


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1 Dlong
    Registered User


    Its funny how people can comment without finding out the full facts,
    1. Is the service wheelchair accessible = YES
    2. Is their a link with Aircoach = YES all in place
    3. Some people found the plane confusing = the new Bantry and existing service will service Cork Airport.

    If there are anymore questions that people need the real answer to please contact the company


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,201 ✭✭✭✭ DaCor
    Registered User


    Dlong wrote: »
    Its funny how people can comment without finding out the full facts,
    1. Is the service wheelchair accessible = YES
    2. Is their a link with Aircoach = YES all in place
    3. Some people found the plane confusing = the new Bantry and existing service will service Cork Airport.

    If there are anymore questions that people need the real answer to please contact the company

    Found the driver!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 876 ✭✭✭ Lord Glentoran


    Dlong wrote: »
    Its funny how people can comment without finding out the full facts,
    1. Is the service wheelchair accessible = YES
    2. Is their a link with Aircoach = YES all in place
    3. Some people found the plane confusing = the new Bantry and existing service will service Cork Airport.

    If there are anymore questions that people need the real answer to please contact the company

    I’ve just looked at the website off my phone. Easily accessible and nice clear timetabling.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,079 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk
    Moderator


    Dlong wrote: »
    Its funny how people can comment without finding out the full facts,
    1. Is the service wheelchair accessible = YES

    That is great if true, but the FAQ on their website still says that it isn't wheelchair accessible:

    https://westcorkconnect.ie/f-a-qs/
    Q. Do you operate wheelchair accessible vehicles?

    A. West Cork Connect does not have wheelchair accessible vehicles.

    That may have changed now and well done if it has, but might they might want to update the website.
    Dlong wrote: »
    2. Is their a link with Aircoach = YES all in place

    What sort of link to Aircoach do they have?
    Dlong wrote: »
    3. Some people found the plane confusing = the new Bantry and existing service will service Cork Airport.

    If there are anymore questions that people need the real answer to please contact the company

    No mention of Cork Airport, etc. Again they might want to update the website. Oh and while at it, the links to twitter and facebook on the bottom of the pages don't work.

    No offence, I'm delighted to see new services like this up and running and back operating after Covid19, best of luck.


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