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Stagecoach Buses to be Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles by 2015

Author: www.alliedmobility.com

Published: 2011-05-30 : (Rev. 2016-06-12)

Synopsis:

Stagecoach East Midlands has vowed to make their entire fleet of buses wheelchair accessible vehicles by 2015.

Main Digest

Stagecoach is one of the country's largest bus and coach operators, connecting over one hundred towns and cities in twenty regions across the UK.

Stagecoach East Midlands has vowed to make their entire fleet of buses wheelchair accessible vehicles by 2015. This announcement, which will be well received by wheelchair users and disability charities, was made last month when the bus company apologized to disabled passenger Karen McPhail.

The apology came after Mrs McPhail, a wheelchair user, along with her husband Peter were denied access to a Stagecoach bus when returning home from a shopping trip. The driver refused to allow Mr and Mrs McPhail to board a low floored bus on safety grounds, despite the couple having traveled on a similar bus earlier that day. As a result Mr McPhail was forced to push his wife 2.5 miles (4km) home to their home in Newark, East Midlands.

New Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles

Stagecoach apologized for the incident and stated that the company is investing in its fleet to ensure all buses are wheelchair accessible vehicles within four years.

A spokesman for Stagecoach East Midlands explained that currently not all of the company's low-floored buses can carry wheelchairs: "We have a small number of early low-floor buses which are not certified by the Department for Transport to carry people in wheelchairs and it would be breaking the law to let drivers take wheelchairs.

"We're working hard to replace these and apologize to Mr and Mrs McPhail for any inconvenience this has caused them"

This news will be well-received by disability charities - Ruth Scott, from disability charity Scope, commented:

"Unfortunately the McPhail story is not unusual. We know that significant numbers of disabled people, particularly those with mobility problems have real difficulty in accessing public transport."

Stagecoach is one of the country's largest bus and coach operators, connecting over one hundred towns and cities in twenty regions across the UK.

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