PUBLIC transport services in Vila Joiosa have been improved by the incorporation of two buses which are fully accessible to passengers with special transport needs.
The buses are fitted with ramps and special seating so that those with reduced mobility will be able to take advantage of the public transport network.
The town´s mayor, Andreu Verdú, along with the transport councillor, Pilar Baigorri, accepted the vehicles with the boss of the company responsible for running the municipal service, Luis González from Avanza Mobility Ado.
It is the company themselves who volunteered to replace two of the vehicles with those adapted for use, and, according to González, “at no cost”, to the municipal funding. The company was simply keen to, “improve service and accessibility in terms of transport in the municipality through these vehicles that have innovative aspects.”
Verdú welcomed the addition of the buses, saying, “We are very pleased with the start-up of these two minibuses on the municipal lines. Thanks to this, we hope that the public will use public transport more and make use of the service during their travels.”
Verdú, in addition, valued the “need to provide the vilera population with an efficient and comfortable service” through the municipal transport network. “These buses that Avanza has presented us with offer a wide range of features, such as the notification system, the ramps and special seats, the transports or the loading of devices; which allow citizens to use the service comfortably and accessibility in a municipality that is committed to the welfare of all people,” he explained.
Transport councillor, Pilar Baigorri, thanked Avanza for their commitment to include this type of vehicle in the municipality, as well as their collaboration in the field of public transport, as it is thanks to the agreement between the company and the council that has “allowed this development to take place, and provided an extra level of service and transport around the municipality for those who needed a little more help, such as the elderly, who can now go about their tasks freely,” she explained.
For the technically minded, we have some facts for you. The buses are 7.75 metres in length, perfect for negotiating the narrow roads of the municipality, and each vehicle has two ramps in the access and egress doors, a reduced floor and special seats for those who use a wheelchair.
They have folding transporters to improve capacity and space, as well as luminous signs indicating the route they are travelling on, and feature both air conditioning and audio systems with indications of the next stop, thus allowing the information service to be expanded to the passenger.
The buses have automated check in systems for passengers holding tickets, all of which are accessible at a low level. Both vehicles have seat belts on all their seats and even have USB ports for keeping your mobile phone or tablet topped up whilst you´re on board.
The development of the technological advances doesn´t stop there however, as these mobiles being topped up on the buses will soon be able to download a mobile application which will not only provide information as to the location of the buses and journey times, but will also allow passengers with even more mobility restrictions to alert the driver of their location, and request that the bus makes a short detour in order to pick them up.
This service is not only aimed at those with reduced mobility, but also those who may feel vulnerable, with the company explaining that the application will also include security measures such as a “protection system” for women embarking on the last journey of the day, where they too can request the vehicles take them as close to their home as possible, thus reducing the risk of them walking on the streets alone.