Wheelchair Accessible Transport for Off-Site Activities
- The first solution would be to hire a coach with a tail lift that will lift a wheelchair on-board and the student then can travel with everyone else:
- However, we are not aware of any such vehicles in Devon and although you can hire one from further afield – they cost a considerable amount of money. Momentum Coach Hire is such a company
- The chair must be checked and tagged by Devon transport to make sure it complies with crash testing etc. If it is not already tagged by Devon transport you will need to contact them to come out and check it.
- Another option would be to use an adapted minibus with a tail-lift to transport the student in their wheelchair along with a group of friends:
Please see listed some local Ring & Ride transport groups below.
- Exeter 01392 494001 www.exetercta.co.uk
- Northern Devon 01271 328866 www.gonorthdevon.co.uk
- Okehampton 01837 55000 www.odctg.co.uk
- Holsworthy 01409 259001 www.holsworthyruraltransport.co.uk
- Ivybridge 01752 690444 www.idcta.co.uk/ring_and_ride.htm
- Honiton 01404 46529 www.tripcta.org
- Exmouth 01395 266662 www.exmouthringandride.org.uk
- Tiverton 01884 242099 www.tdcta.org.uk
- Crediton 01363 773303 www.creditoncommunitytransport.org.uk
- Newton Abbot 01626 335775 www.newtonabbotcta.org
One problem is that these vehicles are often booked at the beginning and end of school because of school runs, so you could try somewhere who could just loan a minibus and you would drive it e.g: Hire | GM Coachwork (gmmobility.co.uk) , Commercial Vehicle Hire | Enterprise Flex-E-Rent
- A Taxi could be used:
- Wheelchair accessible taxis and private hire vehicles – Travel Devon
- But do consider the social aspect of the school trip and the thing that most of us remember which is what happens on the bus on the way there and back! It would be a shame for the student to miss out on this by travelling on their own
- Some schools have used the child’s own vehicle – getting insured for it, learning how to fix the wheelchair in and driving it themselves.
- This may or may not be a possibility – depending on whether the parent needs the vehicle themselves during the day.
- If the student can get themselves on to an ordinary coach without being lifted, you would most likely take a manual chair as a powered would be too heavy to be lifted on:
- Therefore this could either be transported separately in a taxi or another vehicle
- A manual chair could be taken and folded up in the hold, but must be considered in the light of independence and what kind of terrain they will need to traverse.
- Consideration would need to be given as to whether a car seat is required, or something more supportive than an ordinary seat belt.