THE RAIL NETWORK AND HOW WE USE IT
The rail network has a key role in opening opportunities to travel for those with mobility impairments. One key measurement of accessibility is whether passengers in wheelchairs can independently access all platforms at their origin and destination stations. Historically footbridges provided access to other platforms at many stations which presented challenges for those in wheelchairs, although in recent years lifts and ramps have been added to stations across the network. Maintenance of lifts has been an issue in recent years, with lifts at some locations being out of order for up to several weeks consecutively.
Across the island’s rail network, 139 stations provide full wheelchair access to all platforms, 43 require passengers to contact the operator prior to travel, while 17 currently have at least one platform that is not accessible.
A significant proportion of the stations without full independent access for wheelchair users are located in the Dublin, Belfast, and Cork suburban networks, with the majority of stations in Dublin requiring arrangements to be made prior to travel.
Figure 17. Platform accessibility
Figure 18. Platform accessibility – Dublin
Figure 20. Platform accessibility – Cork
Figure 19. Platform accessibility – Belfast