Transport plan for disabled and older people outlined

A new strategy that aims to improve Northern Ireland’s transport system for older people and people with disabilities has been published today.

The Department for Regional Development's (DRD) draft Accessible Transport Strategy (ATS) aims to tackle barriers currently affecting both groups including access to public transport, passenger assistance and information.

John Spellar, Minister for Regional Development, said that a "whole of journey" approach was at the heart of the development of an accessible transport network.

“If older people and people with disabilities are to have confidence in an accessible transport system it is imperative that services are reliable and delivered in a consistent way,” the Minister said.

“When things go wrong, as they sometimes do, there must be procedures in place to allow passengers to complete their journey without undue inconvenience.”

The prospects for an accessible transport future have been greatly enhanced through the introduction of accessibility regulations, which were brought about by the Disability Discrimination Act, the Minister said.

“New buses and trains must now meet standards that are designed to ensure that people with disabilities can get on and off vehicles in safety and without unreasonable difficulty and, in the case of wheelchair users, to do so whilst remaining in their wheelchairs,” he added.

The consultation period for the draft ATS will end on 19 January 2005 and the department aims to publish the final document by March 2005.


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

22 November 2005
Travel Safe Guide for disabled launched
A new guide aimed at helping people with disabilities travel safely in Northern Ireland, has been launched by the Department of Regional Development. NIO Minister Shaun Woodward said the Guide brought together the information people with learning disabilities needed to travel safely throughout the province.
05 April 2005
Government launch 'accessible' transport strategy
The Department for Regional Development (DRD) today published an Accessible Transport Strategy that aims to improve access to the transport system for older people and people with disabilities.
01 April 2010
Rural Transport Gets Stormont Support
NI Rural Development Minister, Michelle Gildernew has visited Boho in Co Fermanagh to meet rural dwellers benefiting from the Dial A Lift (DAL) and pilot Assisted Rural Transport Scheme (ARTS).
09 April 2004
DRD to address disabled transport system
The Government has called on the public to help it improve the accessibility of the local transport system for older people and people with disabilities. The Department for Regional Development (DRD) today revealed that a special project team is working on a strategy to address such needs.
06 July 2011
Public Transport Spending Must Be Prioritised
A crucial government strategy has failed to address Northern Ireland's over-reliance on road transport, according to a leading body of professionals. RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Northern Ireland, says that there has been a disproportionate allocation of funding for road building in Northern Ireland over other forms of transport.