Innovation for Independence

Extending Train Wheelchair Ramp

Train Carriage Retractable Wheelchair Ramp
Publish date:
20/11/2014 - 3:01pm
Last updated:
20/11/2014 - 3:01pm

Currently when trains pull up to a station, wheelchair users often cannot get off at their desired station because information about their arrival has failed to be forwarded. Sometimes this is because the precise platform is not allocated until just before the train arrives. Sometimes this problem is exacerbated by the fact that there are only a few members of staff trained to do the job & they are elsewhere. So why not fit a retractable underfloor ramp that is permanently available.

Insight & Impact

It would allow wheelchair users & some less agile people to exit a train at any station without the need to book assistance in advance. The ramp could be stowed beneath the floor of the carriage taking up little space and strangely enough many trains appear to have such a ramp fitted but what appear to be handles are in fact purely cosmetic. This would allow disabled people travel more freely as any other rail user as & when they choose. This is not possible at present

Skills needed for this project

  • Ramp manufacturers
  • Rail carriage rolling stock design/builders

Please add a comment here....


Bhavni Shah's picture
Great idea - Most buses have automatic ramps operated by the driver. Why can't trains have the same?
Richard Wallace's picture
Here in Milton Keyenes there are no buses with automatic ramps. They are manual and mostly steel. They have to be lifted up from the bus floor and turned through at least 180 degrees, which is impossible for someone outside the bus, so unless the driver does it ( which is unlikely) a Carer is needed or a sympathetic passenger. Some newer buses have a lightweight ramp with cord that enables the driver to lift the ramp first by lifting the cord and then the ramp. Drivers will do this. So where do you love that has automatic ramps?
Richard Wallace's picture
Sorry typo Where do you live that they have automatic ramps?
Richard Wallace's picture
Sorry typo Where do you live that they have automatic ramps?