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Meg Munn MP - Sheffield Heeley's voice in Parliament | Welcome
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On board with ‘Talking Buses’

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Sheffield Heeley MP Meg Munn pledged her support for the ‘Talking Buses’ campaign organised by the ‘Guide Dogs’ charity. This campaign will raise awareness of how audio, as well as visual announcements, for next stop and final destination would improve bus travel for all passengers.


‘Guide Dogs’ has found that many disabled and elderly people refrain from using buses for fear of catching the wrong one, or getting off at the wrong stop. With announcements, similar to those on trains, the charity feels accessibility and quality of service would be greatly improved.


The charity is urging the government to make it compulsory for audio-visual (AV) information systems to be installed in all new buses and coaches. They also call for councils and bus operators to provide a system on existing vehicles.


Meg said:


“On-board announcements about what stop is coming up would be beneficial to all. Some bus companies have already successfully rolled out these new systems and they make an important difference to passengers.


“In a recent YouGov survey, 66% of respondents said they thought it would make bus travel easier if there were on-board announcements about where the bus is going and what stop is coming up.”


David Cowdrey, Guide Dogs’ campaign manager, said:


“A lack of information undermines the independence and safety of vulnerable people who rely on buses to get around. Blind and partially-sighted people, for example, cannot see where they are, while wheelchair users often end up being placed facing backwards. These people risk ending up at the wrong stop.


“As well as disabled people, Talking Buses improve travel for all passengers including visitors to the area hopefully encouraging more to leave their cars at home. And in an emergency, an AV announcement system enables the driver to warn passengers.”


Guide Dogs’ Talking Buses campaign has the support of 24 national disability organisations. You can find out more about Guide Dogs’ ‘Talking Buses’ campaign by visiting: www.guidedogs.org.uk alkingbuses  


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