HC Deb 22 July 1996 vol 282 cc10-1W
Mr. Byers

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research he has(a) commissioned and (b) evaluated into the safety aspects of carrying occupied wheelchairs in moving taxi cabs. [38785]

Mr. Norris

The Department has conducted research on carrying wheelchairs in moving vehicles over a number of years. The results of that work have already been applied to existing designs of purpose-built wheelchair-accessible taxis and will be reflected in the taxi accessibility regulations which we will be introducing under the Disability Discrimination Act 1995.

In practical terms, many thousands of journeys have been undertaken by wheelchair users in taxis over many years. The Department is not aware of any incident in which the carriage of a wheelchair, appropriately positioned and restrained, has caused any difficulty.