Public Transport and Accessibility – How will PSVAR impact your coach company?

New legislation was introduced in January which could have a direct impact on you if you are a coach operator. You’ll likely already be aware of this but if you’re looking to purchase a new coach for future use, then you’ll need to consider your compliance to these provisions.

PSVAR (Public Service Vehicle Accessibility Regulations) applies specifically to coaches which carry more than 22 passengers and were registered prior to 2000. If you’re using an older coach for shorter journeys, such as school transport services, then you may need to update your current coach.

This legislation details that coaches with over 22 seats who provide a local or scheduled transport service, must be accessible to passengers, this includes wheelchair accessibility and more general accessibility such as handrails, seat specifications and steps.

Coaches with 22 seats or less are exempt from the legislation. We recently worked once again with a longstanding customer, A&A Travel (Sussex) Ltd. The company have made a new purchase which now means they are compliant with the new PSVAR legislation and can continue to operate. The addition to their company has allowed them to generate greater turnover and profit, whilst ensuring they are following legislation. You can read Nick’s testimonial from working with CAVA here.

The failure to provide a safe, comfortable and accessible environment for disabled people who are using a public service vehicle, is a criminal offence under the Equality Act. There is criticism towards the Government for the delays in implementing the same regulations on trains. This also applies to rail replacement services, whereby a coach would be used as an alternative.

Have you experienced any issues relating to inaccessibility on public transport? We’d be interested to discuss with coach operators how the transition has been to provide compliant services. If you’re looking for your next coach, ensure you’re also aware of the Euro 6 rules which will impact coach travel across major cities in the UK, you can find out more here

If you’d like any further advice on compliant vehicles and are looking to expand your fleet, contact Mike at CAVA Finance on 0161 222 9599.