A couple of days ago I boarded a bus near my house. It was a bus I take every weekday morning, but that morning I tripped getting on because the driver hadn't lowered the bus. I told him he really should lower it, but when I exited the bus at the other end, he also did not lower the bus. So, reported the incident to Trans Dev. Then I received an email stating that the driver had tried to lower the bus but the mechanism hadn't worked (why didn't he tell me this?).
And THEN the email said it is Public Transport Victoria policy to only lower the buses automatically if the passenger is in a wheel-chair, or using a mobility scooter. In any other case, it is up to the passenger to ask that the bus be lowered.
I wrote back and explained that a person with low vision or blindness is unable to judge the height of a bus, particularly when getting off the bus due to a common condition of not having depth perception. I asked how I would contact someone who I could discuss this with - so far, no reply.
This morning, I get on the bus, again not lowered. I couldn't see that it wasn't lowered so off course I didn't ask for it to be lowered in case it was lowered and I got lip from the driver for asking for the bus to be lowered when it already was. When getting off the bus, the driver asked if the bus was low enough (evidently the same driver), and I told him I didn't know because I could SEE to judge the height of the bus.
He said, as I was getting off the bus, which was too high, that the doors have to be closed to lower the bus?
How on earth is a vision impaired person expected to be able to talk to the driver before getting on to ask for the bus to be lowered through closed doors, and if the doors are opened then the vision impaired person with have to ask for the doors to be closed again for the bus to be lowered. That will be popular with the other passengers...
Then when getting off the bus, how is the vision impaired person supposed to judge the height of the bus with the doors shut? Or again, ask the driver to close the doors to lower the bus while other passengers wait behind the vision impaired person.
Anyway, you can bet I'm taking this further.
Friday, October 13, 2017
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