Another Rant, this time Arriva buses
On Tuesday 1st October I had to catch a bus from Aylesbury to Berkhamsted. Arriva buses operate this service, the 500 bus. As I was about to get on the 17.25 bus the driver said that he would not allow me on because there was no space for my mobility scooter. I was told to wait for the next bus. I’m afraid to say that I blew a gasket and told him what I thought of Arriva, It was not something your grandmother ought to hear.
Facilities for disabled people on every bus
By the time I had finished venting my spleen the driver looked at me and agreed with every word that I had said. I cannot remember exactly what I said, it went along these lines. Arriva do not have a good track record in looking after disabled people, their quality of service is appalling and there should be facilities for disabled people on every bus.
I just wanted to get home
When I had finished he said it would be OK if I could get my mobility scooter into the luggage space. I folded up my mobility scooter and other passengers then put it into the luggage area for me. It took about 2 minutes. The bus driver remained in his seat and did not offer any assistance.
The timetable shows the next bus leaves Aylesbury at 17:55, after that there are no more buses back to Berkhamsted. I knew that the buses leave every 30 minutes but I was exhausted and I wanted to get home.
I was worn out
I had given a talk about MS and Progressive and Physical Disabilities at the Wycombe campus of Amersham and Wycombe college. The presentation lasted about an hour and a half and it was very well received. I had been on the go since 9ish in the morning, I was physically and mentally worn-out. The last thing I needed was a bus that was not accessible for the disabled.
In Berkhamsted a passenger helped me to get my mobility scooter off the bus and onto the pavement. I unfolded it and then went home. It was a day that ended up leaving a sour taste in my mouth
Extract from Arriva’s policy towards customers with disabilities
‘Drivers should politely explain why they cannot help. Arriva provides all drivers with appropriate guidance on treating customers with disabilities with courtesy and respect. Our drivers can give you an information card if you wish to comment on our services through our Customer Services department.’