Public transportation may be available in many places around the world, but it’s not always accessible for disabled people.
Unfortunately, many disabled people have difficulties with these different outlets of transportation. There needs to be changed.
All kinds of transportation have their flaws, including trains, subway systems, boats, airplanes, etc. When developing these methods of transportation, accessibility has to be an important component.
It’s unfair that some disabled people are inconvenienced or unable to use public transportation due to inaccessibility. These methods of transportation are supposed to be available to everyone, and they should be.
Some may feel that it’s too late to change transportation, but with the willingness to do so, it’s definitely possible. In fact, it needs to happen.
What’s wrong with public transportation?
Look at the many different types of public transportation, and if you don’t have a disability, imagine if you did. Imagine if you couldn’t navigate your wheelchair through a station, or it was damaged by someone handling it, or you weren’t able to get the special assistant you need.
Some people might overlook this idea, but it’s important to note. A disability shouldn’t prevent anybody from using the public transportation system.
Some trains don’t have ramps to get from the platform on to the train or an accessible walkway. Some subway stations only have stairs that lead into their station.
Bus drivers might not always be trained to help those who require the help or may not have a ramp to ride a wheelchair on to a bus. This isn’t always the case, but it does happen.
A lot of boats don’t have ramps to allow wheelchairs on, or might not have a designated space for wheelchairs for smaller boats. Even though there are accessible rooms on cruise ships, many times the door could be too small, or the room is a regular size, but is bigger compared to other rooms.
Some data shows that around 25 wheelchairs a day are damaged during air travel. When checking in your wheelchair, you don’t know who’s handling it from there. In fact, there are many situations where wheelchairs are even lost. Taking away a wheelchair from many disabled people is like taking away their legs. It’s unacceptable.
How can transportation be improved?
Considering how much transportation there is worldwide, it would take years to fix. Regardless, it needs to happen.
As new buses are being made, they can be created with a hydraulic system that allows the bus to sink closer to the floor. This enables a ramp to be used.
Train and subway stations should start building ramps, or adding elevators if needed. Each conductor should also have some type of training where they can help disabled people enter the train safely.
As new boats are made, add more accessible areas, build bigger “accessible” rooms on cruise ships, and add elevators to ferries that may not have one.
One of the biggest issues lies in airports and on airplanes. Stricter supervision and training on how to properly store wheelchairs need to be put in place. It all begins with how wheelchairs are treated throughout air travel, and significant improvements need to be made.
With airports, new systems are also going to need to be implemented in order to help. Tracking systems should be put on to wheelchairs. Luggage is one thing, but wheelchairs are irreplaceable. It’s unfair for a disabled person to be without their wheelchair when traveling.
A world filled with these changes won’t happen overnight, but each small change can have a big impact on someone’s life.
Sadly, the reality is we might not be heading in this direction, yet. More people need to continue to reach out and explain the issues so that others can see.
One concern that does seem like it should be happening soon is how wheelchairs are treated at airports.
More results continue to pour in about the mistreatment of wheelchairs at airports. As time goes on, wheelchairs only become more expensive.
Airlines will have to change in order to accommodate disabled passengers. If not, they will lose their business. Since they don’t want that, all airlines will likely come up with a solution in the near future.
As for the other types of public transportation, there’s still a long road ahead. The sooner that you raise your voice, the sooner that the situation will be fixed.