Transport CommitteeWritten evidence from Paul Pacey (DAT 77)

My mobility is poor due to disability caused by MS. I live in Norwich and travel on my mobility scooter on First Eastern buses. There are other buses that take wheelchairs but not scooters. For instance, I have attempted to use my scooter on buses operated by Lothian Buses in Midlothian and Edinburgh and was refused access.

I need my scooter to get around but there is no uniform provision of access for scooters on buses. The Confederation of Passenger Transport gives the providers’ perspective. They publish a code for operators providing guidelines for provision of access for mobility scooters, but adherence by operators is voluntary and I have been unable to find any list of which operators do adhere to it. Therefore I do not know where I can take my scooter and be confident of using it on local buses.

I believe that there are plans to increase access for mobility scooters across bus fleets, however the dates I have seen for such improvement are several years into the future. Your intervention would be very helpful particularly because later is not good for many people. We have an ageing population, and people with mobility problems are expected to live in the community today, not in 2020.

March 2013

Prepared 13th September 2013