What is a fully accessible vehicle?
The ECMT (The European Conference of Ministers of Transport, now the International Transport Forum) Charter on Access to Transport Services and Infrastructure, adopted at the ECMT Council of Ministers on 19-20 May 1999 in Warsaw, states that accessible vehicles must incorporate as a minimum:
- full access for wheelchair users, including where appropriate accessible toilet facilities;
- features to aid people with difficulties in walking, gripping, reaching or balancing (including non-slip surfaces, hand rails and handholds);
- facilities to assist people with vision impairments (including consistent use of colour contrast, clear sighting and lighting, non-reflective surfaces, audible as well as visual announcements and tactile and audible guidance and warning surfaces and systems (where appropriate); and
- facilities for people who are Deaf or hard of hearing (including visual as well as audible announcements and clear signs).
Which modes of transport are covered by the regulations?
Breakdown recovery vehicles
Hire (or rental) vehicles
Private hire vehicles
Public service vehicles
Vehicles used on a system using a mode of guided transport
When will all buses and coaches meet the Public Service Vehicle Accessibility Regulations 2000 (PSVAR)?
All full size single deck buses over 7.5 tonnes will be fully accessible from 1 January 2016, and all double deck buses from 1 January 2017. New buses weighing up to 7.5 tonnes and coaches will be required to have wheelchair access from 1 January 2005. All buses weighing up to 7.5 tonnes will be fully accessible from 1 January 2015 and coaches by 1 January 2020.