I was aboard one of Auckland’s new electric ‘accessible’ trains when the electric wires came down in front of the train while it was travelling between stations.
Able-bodied people were able to disembark easily while those with disabilities were unclear how to get off the train due to the height between the step and the ground.
This experience has removed all the confidence I had in solo independent travel throughout the city and suburbs. An added impairment is my frustration and loss of freedom. A practical solution would be for all public transport to carry a ramp to allow mobility impaired people to exit trains and buses in an emergency situation.
An accessibility act could require staff training to support disabled people using public transport in an emergency and ensure that all trains and buses have quick exit routes for disabled people.
This is my access story, it is one of many. I'm sharing it because I want a law that puts accessibility at the heart of an inclusive Aotearoa New Zealand.