Travelling in trains is one of the most inconvenient tasks for most differently-abled people. Lack of ramps and suitable lifts makes it nearly impossible for them to board the trains. However, this might change for good thanks to an initiative by the Gutur division of the Southern Central Railways (SCR).
In a welcoming change, Train number 12747 Guntur–Vikarabad Palnadu Express of the SCR got a special ramp and wheelchair last week, which will make commutation for the passengers easy.
The foldable ramp weighs about 35 kg and it can take a load of up to 250 kg. It is specially designed to fit the entrance of any coach including the AC coaches, helping users to enter any coach with ease. According to a report by The Hindu, the ramp comes with a pair of adjustable legs which ensure that the passengers can travel safely where the platform-to-train heights vary from 400 mm to 600 mm.
On the other hand, the foldable wheelchair is light-weight and can take a load of up to 100 kg. It comes with features like foldable hand rest, swivelling footrest, a handbrake and a locking system.
To seek this facility, passengers will have to contact the station master. They will also have to mention their destination station so that the housekeeping staff on board can keep the ramp ready at the station.
The Guntur division of the SCR, which has pioneered this scheme hopes to have one ramp and a few wheelchairs at every platform in the 70 stations in its division by September this year, The Times of India reported.
While this is only one of the many trains traversing in the country, it’s a positive step in making our public transport system more inclusive and passenger-friendly.