Transport for Wales introduces sign language app for the deaf community

Posted: 7 February 2020 | | No comments yet

The app has been designed to improve accessibility and inclusion on the Transport for Wales network and make travel easier for deaf passengers.

Transport for Wales introduces sign language app for the deaf community

Credit: Transport for Wales

Transport for Wales (TfW) has launched a new sign language app designed to aid communication for customers from the deaf community in a bid to improve accessibility. The new app, created in collaboration with InterpreterNow, utilises a video call style system, making communication between railway employees and deaf customers even easier.

Dr Robert Gravelle, Accessibility and Inclusion Manager for Transport for Wales, said: “We are extremely proud to be the first transport provider in Wales to provide such support for the Deaf BSL using community. Each and every customer on our network matters and when technology exists to make their lives easier, the obvious thing to do is utilise that technology. I look forward to this new app helping us take a further step towards providing fully accessible journeys for all our customers.”

The app, which is available to download for free on iOS or Android, allows customers to sign to an interpreter through a video call, who will then relay the customer query to the Transport for Wales staff member. The interpreter will then be able to sign the response back to the customer.

The initiative, which has already been a success on the Scot Rail network, makes Transport for Wales the first transport operator to introduce this type of opportunity in Wales.

Edward Jenkins BEM and Vice Chairman of the Cardiff Deaf Community, said: “For a member of the deaf community to have a device like this in their pocket, that aids communication this way, is just incredible and will open so many doors that they otherwise may not have been able to get through. To be able to turn up at the station and actually talk to somebody and tell them what you want in a simple and easy manner like this, is just amazing.”