Accessibility on Scania's city buses
Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Scania is a leading producer of trucks, buses, industrial engines and marine engines. The thesis treats the subject accessibility on city buses. In the current situation customers choose layouts and equipment of the buses on their own. Scania wants to acquire knowledge of the customer needs so that they are able to recommend a more accessible layout for a high and low passenger flow. The layout shall include dimensioning and placement of doors, seats, handrails, equipment and areas for people with reduced mobility. To learn more about accessibility on city buses a literature study was made. The study included causes for mobility reduction, available aids, knowledge about Scania´s buses, how Public Transport Authorities work with accessibility and legal requirements for bus construction. Interviews, observations and benchmarking were also made to see how accessible current buses are and how they could be improved to ease travelling for people with reduced mobility. The gathered information showed that nearly 8 % of the population in Sweden today live with some form of mobility reduction. Legal requirements about accessibility state that everyone shall be able to travel with public transport vehicles despite disability. In reality passengers with reduced mobility face a number of problems when travelling by bus. Many current ramps do not meet the legal requirements on slopes when folded out against a kerb. Problems with infrastructure and traffic in the inner city of big cities often lead to the bus not getting to the stop which means the ramp has to be folded out against ground. This gives an even larger slope that is harder for wheelchair users to access. At the wheelchair area a side support is required in buses without legal demands on safety belts. Some of the current side supports are folded down which is good in the aspect that they are not in the way when not in use. However this solution is sometimes difficult for people with reduced mobility in the upper body to use, as it requires large joint angles. There are also many permanent solutions that could be in the way when accessing the area. For buses without legal requirements on seat belts there are no requirements on fastening systems for wheelchair users. Since there are people in wheelchair that also have mobility reduction in the upper body and could have difficulty holding on to the handholds at the area, a fastening system would however be a good solution. In current layouts there are sometimes problems accessing the wheelchair area depending on how the door is placed relative to it. Wheelchair passengers describe it as having to make an unnatural turn. From the new version of Buss 2010, a document for recommendations from the bus business in Sweden, there are requirements on having larger space between seats, four strollers and priority seats on low floor. This means that new layouts have to be modified to meet these aspects. For the operators that manage the public traffic in Sweden it would be desirable with standard layouts suitable for different intensity of passenger flow, since they work in different areas around the country. Creative methods were used for concepts development of layouts and equipment. Ideation and evaluation sessions were held with two different groups from Scania in Sweden and Poland. Two new layouts were created, one for high and one for low passenger flow. Since the requirements on accessibility are the same despite passenger flow intensity the accessibility adjustments are the same for the different layouts. Some common aspects were that the front and middle door would be close to each other with the priority seats in between for less walking distance and that the wheelchair would be placed in a suitable position to the middle door for easy access. The layouts also required walker space next to reserved seats so the passengers would not have to leave it to access seats further away like in the current situation. The layout for high passenger flow has more standing area on the side of the gangway to prevent people from blocking access to seats during dense traffic. The layout for low passenger flow has more seats and a smaller pram area to avoid having standing passengers. A new concept for a ramp was developed with a lower slope than the legal requirement for more easy access of the bus. To achieve this, the ramp begins to slope inside the bus. This means that the extension needed for a lower slope does not have to be as long outside the bus. A side support was created that is easier for the passenger to fold out than current solutions. The support is also adjustable to fit a larger variety of users. A fastening system in form of a belt solution was also created that would be easier for wheelchair users to handle on their own. My recommendation to Scania is to propose the concepts for layouts, boarding device and side support to their clients as they are more adapted to people with reduced mobility as well as to different passenger flow intensity. The fastening system is not recommended for continued development as there are doubts whether it really exist a need for it.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 143 p.
Teknik, Tillgänglighet, Busslayouter, Passagerarflöde
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-51996Local ID: 927c63eb-58a8-4d9a-9dba-1ce8453c5a99OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ltu-51996DiVA: diva2:1025362
Subject / course
Student thesis, at least 30 credits
Industrial Design Engineering, master's level
Validerat; 20111216 (anonymous)2016-10-042016-10-04Bibliographically approved