Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 15°C

Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

Felixstowe: Wheelchair-users facing ‘pot luck’ on the buses

08:52 07 February 2013

Not all First Eastern Counties

Not all First Eastern Counties' buses can take wheelchair-users.

Archant

DISABLED people are not guaranteed to get a bus ride at Felixstowe – facing “pot luck” when they turn up to wait at a stop, it was claimed today.

Despite thousands of pounds having been spent on raising pavements to provide access to vehicles, not all low-floor buses are suitable for wheelchair users on routes around the town.

Town councillor Michael Sharman described the situation as dreadful and called on people with disabilities to keep a log of times, stops and routes where they had been denied a ride because the bus could not take them.

“I spoke to First Eastern buses about the situation and they told me they were not obliged to provide low-floor buses and that Felixstowe is not on a designated route for them,” he said.

“The bus I travelled back to Felixstowe on one evening this week was 19 years old and there was no way a disabled person could have got onto it. It wasn’t just the step up but it had a dividing barrier for passengers at the entrance, too.

“Apparently, if a person in a wheelchair turns up at a bus stop there is no guarantee they can get onto the bus and they may have to sit and wait for the next one or the one after that. I certainly wouldn’t want to do that in this weather.

“It seems it’s just a matter of luck if you get a ride.

“It is disgusting and a dreadful situation that really needs sorting out.

“I would like to see people in wheelchairs keeping a log of the times, bus numbers and stops where they have had problems.”

A spokesman for First Eastern said all vehicles in the Ipswich fleet were “low floor access” but nine of them do not have facilities on board for passengers with wheelchairs or push-chairs.

“This is an issue we are aware of and are addressing over the coming months by replacing these vehicles with newer, DDA compliant buses that do have the necessary bays for wheelchairs and push-chairs,” he said.

“Wherever possible, we try to ensure that all routes have vehicles that cater for all passengers.”

3 comments

  • Well i suppose we should be thankful that Ipswich buses are 100% DDA compliant then. another black mark against First bus. who in my opinion should be called Worst bus.

    Report this comment

    mr angry

    Thursday, February 7, 2013

  • Its about time this bus company trained its drivers properly to NOT travel with indicators going for miles. This happens quite a lot.

    Report this comment

    pukkatrukka

    Thursday, February 7, 2013

  • As someone who has a 'wheelchair user'... I can safely say that this report is 'spot on', but despite some drivers do lower the ramps when they are 'in use'... many sit in their cabins without a care of 'helping'. Many 75's don't even cater for 'wheelchairs, some 66's are so narrow' and the statement of '“I spoke to First Eastern buses about the situation and they told me they were not obliged to provide low-floor buses and that Felixstowe is not on a designated route for them,” he said.... they need to read the 'DDA and transport report... by 2014-15 all buses 'must be wheelchair friendly' and if 'Felixstowe is not a proper route'...why run buses to the 'town'? It does amaze me how 'they say... if a wheelchair wants to get on... but refuse to enforce it'.

    Report this comment

    csiuk2007

    Thursday, February 7, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Action from the Felixstowe & Walton United v Bury Town in the Suffolk Premier Cup. Photo: Steve Waller

A football club’s dream of a new clubhouse and changing rooms fit for the 21st Century has moved a step closer with the award of a £50,000 grant.

Shadow foreign sec Hilary Benn with Emma Reynolds and MEP Richard Hewitt on the Labour In Battle Bus meeting the public in Ipswich town centre.

Half of Labour’s shadow cabinet are reported to have resigned today in the fallout after the referendum result.

Lionel Richie on stage in Colchester

“What the hell is this? You call this a summer evening? Welcome to Cold-chester!”

Aldeburgh beach

Global superstar Taylor Swift has been spotted strolling the streets of a Suffolk seaside town, after she flew into the country to meet her rumoured new love interest’s mother.

The Marquis of Cornwallis, pictured in 2006, which is near where the crash happened.

Emergency services are currently at the scene of a single vehicle crash near to the Marquis of Cornwallis pub in Layham.

Crowds enjoyed the sunshine at Ipswich Music Day 2015 in Christchurch Park.
Stetsons are Cool got the crowd dancing.

From live music and open air cinemas to art, sport and stunt displays, Ipswich has a packed programme of family fun lined up this summer.

Town pastors gather for their 10-year celebration conference at Adastral Park, Martlesham Heath

Town pastors from across Suffolk gathered together to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the project.

Sydney Harbour Bridge, Australia

Ipswich isn’t blessed with beautiful bridges; civil engineers don’t come to town to marvel at the engineering prowess of Telford, Brunel or Stephenson, writes John Norman, of The Ipswich Society.

The White Hart pub in High Street, Saxmundham.

A public meeting has been called in Saxmundham to try to put together a £450,000-plus community bid to buy a closed down town centre pub.

Ipswich Choral Society

An evening of music and poetry will celebrate a love of all things Shakespeare by the Ipswich Choral Society in Blakenham Woodland Garden next week.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24