UK rail regulator to create assisted travel advisory group
The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has announced it will create an advisory group to support work on potential updates to the guidance that the rail industry uses to form accessibility policies.
Credit: TfL / Mike Garnett
This comes after ORR research in November 2017 which showed that although there is high satisfaction among passengers receiving booked and unbooked travel assistance, there are at times some problems with reliability and there is a need for improvements in staff training, particularly around hidden disabilities. The research also identified that there is little awareness of what assistance is actually available.
Stephanie Tobyn, Deputy Director of Consumers at ORR, said: “Our research showed that where assisted travel works as it should, passengers find it a good service. But, current guidance is out of date and our research shows that there is scope to make improvements in passenger awareness, reliability and staff training. In creating the advisory group, ORR is bringing together passengers and industry to help inform how best to make improvements to this important service.”
The advisory group will comprise disability groups and individuals such as the recently appointed Disability Rail Sector Champion as well as industry bodies such as the Rail Delivery Group, Transport Focus and the Department for Transport (DfT). The group will advise on proposals to the changes to accessibility guidelines, due to be published in autumn 2018.