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Public Service Vehicles Accessibility Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003

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Rearward-facing wheelchairs

4.—(1) Any wheelchair space fitted to a regulated public service vehicle shall comply with the following requirements–

(a)a wheelchair space shall not be less than–

(i)1300mm measured in the longitudinal plane of the vehicle,

(ii)750mm measured in the transverse plane of the vehicle, and

(iii)1500mm measured vertically from any part of the floor of the wheelchair space;

(b)a wheelchair space shall allow the carriage of a wheelchair and a wheelchair user seated in the wheelchair and facing the rear of the vehicle;

(c)a wheelchair space shall be fitted with a backrest which shall–

(i)be fitted to the front end of the wheelchair space,

(ii)be positioned centrally with respect to the front end of the wheelchair space, and

(iii)be fitted with a padded surface facing the rear of the vehicle; and

(d)a wheelchair space shall be fitted with a horizontal handrail which shall–

(i)be fitted along not less than one of the longitudinal sides of the wheelchair space,

(ii)be at a height of not less than 850mm and not more than 1000mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space,

(iii)run continuously from a point not more than 300mm to the rear of the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally to a point not less than 1000mm to the rear of the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally,

(iv)not extend into the wheelchair space by more than 90mm measured horizontally from the edge of the wheelchair space,

(v)be capable of being easily and firmly gripped by a wheelchair user,

(vi)have a circular cross section with a diameter of not less than 30mm and not more than 35mm,

(vii)have clear space of not less than 45mm between any part of the vehicle and all parts of a handrail other than its mountings,

(viii)have a slip-resistant surface, and

(ix)contrast with the parts of the vehicle adjacent to the handrail.

(2) Any backrest fitted to a wheelchair space in accordance with sub-paragraph (1)(c) shall comply with the following requirements–

(a)the bottom edge of a backrest shall be at a height of not less than 350mm and not more than 480mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space;

(b)the top edge of a backrest shall be at a height of not less than 1300mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space;

(c)a backrest shall have a width of–

(i)not less than 270mm and not more than 420mm up to a height of 830mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space, and

(ii)not less than 270mm and not more than 300mm at heights exceeding 830mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space;

(d)a backrest shall be fitted at an angle of not less than 4° and not more than 8° to the vertical with the bottom edge of the backrest positioned closer to the rear of the vehicle than the top edge;

(e)the padded surface of a backrest shall form a single and continuous plane;

(f)the padded surface of a backrest shall pass through any point on an imaginary vertical plane situated to the rear of the front end of the wheelchair space and situated not less than 100mm and not more than 120mm from the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally and not less than 830mm and not more than 870mm from the floor of the wheelchair space measured vertically; and

(g)a backrest shall be capable of bearing a load of 2000N applied for a minimum of 2 seconds by means of a block 200mm x 200mm square in the longitudinal plane of the vehicle towards the front of the vehicle to the centre of the padded surface of the backrest at a height of not less than 600mm and not more than 800mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space. The backrest shall not deflect more than 100mm or suffer permanent deformation or damage.

(3) In the lateral plane of the wheelchair space, a clear space of not less than 750mm shall be maintained and, in order to restrict the lateral movement of a reference wheelchair, there shall be a distance not greater than 900mm (measured in the lateral plane of the wheelchair space) between any two of the following adjacent means of support fitted on each side of the wheelchair space–

(a)a vertical stanchion situated to the rear of the front end of the wheelchair space and running continuously from the floor of the wheelchair space to a height of not less than 1500mm, which shall comply with the following requirements–

(i)the base of the stanchion shall be not less than 400mm and not more than 560mm from the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally, and

(ii)at heights exceeding 775mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space, the stanchion shall be not less than 540mm and not more than 560mm from the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally; or

(b)a retractable rail extending continuously from a point not more than 200mm from the front end of the wheelchair space to a point not less than 540mm from the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally and at a height of not less than 600mm and not more than 800mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space; or

(c)a partition extending continuously from a point not more than 200mm from the front end of the wheelchair space to a point not less than 540mm from the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally and at a height of not less than 600mm and not more than 800mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space; or

(d)the side wall, or equipment fitted to the side wall, of the vehicle extending continuously from a point not more than 200mm from the front end of the wheelchair space to a point not less than 540mm from the front end of the wheelchair space measured horizontally and at a height of not less than 600mm and not more than 800mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space.

(4) Any stanchion, retractable rail, partition, or side wall (in this sub-paragraph referred to as “the device”) fitted to a regulated public service vehicle in accordance with sub-paragraph (3) shall be capable of bearing a load of 1000N applied for a minimum of 2 seconds by means of a block 200mm x 200mm in the transverse plane of the wheelchair space and applied to the centre of the device at a height of not less than 600mm and not more than 800mm measured vertically from the floor of the wheelchair space. The device should not deflect more than 50mm or suffer permanent deformation or damage.

(5) One or more seats which are capable of being tipped, folded or otherwise moved may lie within the volume specified in sub-paragraph (1)(a) or within the gangway specified in paragraph 7 provided that the seat is capable of being easily moved out of the volume or out of the gangway.

(6) The clear space in front of any seat may lie within the volume specified in sub-paragraph (1)(a) or within the gangway specified in paragraph 7.

(7) There shall be a sign on or near a seat specified in sub-paragraphs (5) and (6) stating the following “Please give up this seat for a wheelchair user” or stating words of equivalent meaning.

(8) In this paragraph, the phrase “front end of a wheelchair space” means the end of a wheelchair space that is closer to the front of the regulated public service vehicle to which the wheelchair space is fitted.

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