We generally never spend time over questions like: how much do we have to walk on an airport before we enter our flight? How many steps do we need to climb in order to get inside the plane? How much time does it take to one to reach to their seat in a plane? Are the railways and the bus transportation system disabled friendly?
Traveling, a primarily leisure activity, is looked forward to by one and all. However, while traveling a person ensures that it as comfortable as possible otherwise, the whole purpose of enjoying during the travel is lost. A person with disability spends more time in planning how they will travel as the questions that we tend to ignore are crucial points for their travel and if left unsolved, then can make the whole journey tiresome and unpleasant.
For people with disability, making sure that their traveling experience is as easy as possible several transportation like carrier Airlines, include facilities that can be availed well in advance in order to make the traveling better.
For example, most of the airlines, allow bookings to be done well in advance in case the person requires a wheelchair. Individual attention is given to people with disability, a facility which other customers are not provided with. A person can avail the wheelchair in one of the following cases:-
a. If the person can ascend/descend steps and walk till the seat.
b. If the person cannot ascend/descend steps however is able to walk till the seat.
c. If the person is unable to either of them.
Also, assistance is provided to people with visual impairment and those who are deaf. It is always suggested to keep the airline that one is traveling by, aware of any kind of assisting device that they would need beforehand, such as a walker, travel wheelchair etc.
Although, airlines have wheelchairs and other required equipment to make traveling a better experience for the people with disability, sadly, our current bus transportation system still lacks behind. While many countries like U.S. and U.K. has developed lift up equipment that can used by the bus drivers and agents in order to help the person with disability board the bus, such facilities are still not a part of India’s bus transportation.
However, the Indian metro system prevalent in metro cities like Delhi, have always shown a helping hand for the people with disability. The staff workers at the metro stations constantly guide the person with disability, ensuring that they safely board the metro. They are assisted till they are seated in case the person is blind or requires immediate assistance.
It has been suggested by Voice of Specially Able People that ramps which can be used to move a wheelchair inside and outside a train, should be added on both the sides as well as the platforms include e-cars in order to drop the person with disability to their respective boarding train with much ease, as reported by The Economic Times. It also stated suggestions of creating stair lift on the stations which could lift the wheelchair as well as power wheel chair with motorized lift.
It is time that the government looks into such suggestions and aim at making both railways as bus transport system friendlier towards the persons with disability.