Accessible Transportation For Children With Special Needs

Accessible Transportation For  Children With Special Needs


Project Supported by

Collins Aerospace

Salient Features Of This Vehicle

Designed As Per International Accessibility Guidelines

Choice of vehicle

  • As we have to provide door-to-door services - small vehicles (mini- or midi-buses) were chosen as they are feasible and economical to operate.

Door width

  • Door width - 800mm between handrails for better clearance

Handrails and Stanchions

  • Handrails are fixed on both sides of the entrance.
  • Entrance handrails is extended from a point no more than 100mm from the outside edge of the first step, on both sides of the entrance.
  • Sloping handrails (parallel to the slope of the steps) are added to the vertical rail close to the outside of the entrance.
  • Handrails are fixed to the inside of the door as long as they do not move excessively when the door is open.
  • Handrails are provided in a continuous path from the entrance at a height of 800 - 900mm, past the driver, to the first priority seats, to help visually impaired and other disabled passengers reach their seats.
  • Handrails are made 30 to 35mm in diameter and fixed with a minimum clearance of 45mm to the adjacent surface to allow for good grip.
  • A good grip is also promoted by using a non-slip rather than a polished finish.
  • Inside the bus, vertical handrails or stanchions are fixed at every second row of seats to help passengers moving around or standing.
  • The maximum recommended distance between handrails is 1050mm so people can reach from one stanchion to another.
  • Many CwDs are not able to use hanging straps and ceiling-mounted rails. For good visibility, handrails and stanchions are painted in a colour contrasting with the surroundings, such as bright yellow. The same colour is also be applied to the edges of steps.
  • Hook from pole and knots in the rope to the level of the seat on top of all the seats. Ropes are suspended from the roof pole to the seat for all the seats.


All Priority seats (high seat with adjustable inclination)

  • High seat, bucket seat with adjustable inclination
  • All seats are designed as priority seats with a minimum pitch of 650mm; this gives sufficient space for people with stiff legs, and calipers to get in and out and sit down easily.

Aisles (passage between rows of seats)

  • The aisle is 450-550 mm wide.

Signage and information

  • Clear destination and route number would be displays on the outside of the bus are essential. Route numbers should be at least 200mm high, 300mm preferred, and the destination displayed using lower case letters at least 125mm high.
  • White or bright yellow letters against a black background are most clearly visible.

Wheelchair space

  • Wheelchair users can travel facing either forward or backward, but never sideways. The length of the wheelchair space of 1500mm is important.

Power lifts

  • Wheelchair lifts are used they must have a safe working load of 300kg and be at least 750mm wide and 1250mm long when deployed. Guardrails are needed along the sides and roll stops at least 100mm high are needed to provide security for a passenger using a wheelchair.

Accessible Transportation For  Children With Special Needs

Steps and Stairs

  • The design of steps and stairs assist ambulant disabled people. Steps are designed at 150mm high and 300mm deep, with vertical, round nosed risers without overhangs.
  • Handrails are provided on both sides, and also in the centre if stairways are wider than 1800mm.
  • A low-cost way to lower the distance to the first step without interfering with the need for high clearance of the bus chassis is taken care of by deploying an automatically step extension when the door opens.

 'Chest & Pelvic' - shaped belt which can be easily detached

  • Not X shaped but end to end seat belts for all seats are provided.
  • Installation of the shoulder restraint to the bus wall are designed slightly behind the level of the shoulder joint of the occupant. The goal is to have the shoulder belt contact the CwD over the clavicle (or collar bone) while avoiding the neck area. The lap belt portion must contact the hard structures of the pelvis (namely the iliac crests) and avoid the soft abdominal areas.
  • This provision is helpful particularly for children with a lack of head and trunk control. And also for safety during sudden braking and forward propulsion.

Bucket Seats with an Inclination

  • Seats were designed at least 450mm wide (per passenger), between 430mm and 460mm high above the floor, and allow at least 230mm standing space. It is best practice to reserve two or more seats for severely disabled passengers, as many find it impossible or dangerous to stand in a moving vehicle. These seats are designed in the entrance and have a 450mm legroom.

Other Facilities

  • Emergency escape exits with larger windows for easy exit during an emergency.
  • Special fire suppression systems
  • Power cutoff switch
  • SOS button - Emergency communications system
  • Harnesses to secure wheelchairs
  • GPS
  • CCTV


  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
  • RPWD Act 2016
  • United Nations Development Programme, Malaysia
  • ECMT (2006) Improving transport for people with mobility handicaps. European Conference of Ministers of Transport, OECD Publications Service, Paris.
  • Sohail M, D Mitlin and D A C Maunder (2003) Partnerships to improve access and quality of public transport: Guidelines. Water, Engineering and Development Centre, Loughborough University, Loughborough.

To know more about this project contact

Dr. N.S.Senthil Kumar, Ph.D.(Rehab)

Chief Innovation Officer (Clinical & Technical)

Mobile: (+91) 9739940421

Office No: +91 80 2547 5165

Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.