Proposal to enable to approval of vehicles equipped with mechanisms other than platforms intended to assist access by persons with reduced mobility. The purpose is to avoid hindering innovation in offering solutions to persons with reduced mobility. The proposal add “lift” to the examples of possible mechanisms and modifies the language to be less specific in references to “wheelchairs” to address persons with reduced mobility regardless of whether they use a wheelchair.
9. The expert from Italy recalled the purpose of GRSG-114-16 and the discussion of GRSG at its previous session on new provisions for the possible approval of alternative equipment to improve the accessibility of people with reduced mobility, particularly on coaches. He introduced a revised proposal (GRSG-115-26) and underlined that the provisions for the installation of a lift were not aimed at replacing the current mandatory requirements on the vehicle accessibility for people with reduced mobility. The expert from the United Kingdom welcomed the proposal, but underlined that this alternative equipment was usually not part of the vehicle and could be considered as an after-market solution upon the choice of the coach operator. The expert from Finland stated that such a lift could not substitute a wheelchair ramp or platform. The experts from Germany and the Russian Federation endorsed that position and questioned if such a lift could even be type approved as a component or a separate part under UN Regulation No. 107. The expert from UK added that such devices needed the intervention of the driver and, in some cases, challenging manoeuvres by the disabled person. He also questioned the universality of the device for different angle of access (i.e. steeper steps). Taking into account multiple possible technical solutions, a number of experts preferred that such alternative equipment not be part of the Regulation and, therefore not in the scope.