Assistive technology (AT) is any item, piece of equipment, software program, or product system used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of persons with disabilities.
Public transport is an important service that enables people to access work, education, health care, and social activities. However, public transport can sometimes create significant barriers and challenges that limit mobility and participation for people with disabilities. Assistive technologies in public transport enhance the accessibility and usability of public transport for disabled passengers and improve their safety and comfort.
Assistive technologies for public transport can be personal, vehicle-based, and infrastructure-based. Personal assistive technologies are carried by users, such as hearing aids or smartphones. This article will focus on Vehicle and infrastructure-based solutions.
Vehicle-based assistive technologies are installed into public transport vehicles and infrastructure, such as signs or accessible ticket machines.
kentkart ‘s assistive technology solutions for accessible public transport
As kentkart, we try to provide solutions that support equality and accessibility. With the contributions of our project partners and our field experience, we are trying to make it easier for people to use transport systems. Below you can find some of our assistive technology solutions.
- Mobile application
As part of the Barrier-Free Transportation Project, we develop a smartphone app that allows booking a wheelchair-accessible bus or requesting assistance from the public transport staff via push notifications to the driver panel:
- Passenger Information System
kentkart ‘s passenger information systems, including On-Board LCD Panels, Smart Stop LCD/LED Panels, support voice announcements (text-to-speech), and signs that inform if a wheelchair-accessible bus is arriving.
- Disabled Access System for Elevators
Sometimes authorities require to limit the use of certain elevators only to disabled citizens. To prevent the misuse of such elevators we install the validation devices that allow elevators to be used only by taping concessionary smart cards given to disabled citizens as can be seen from the example below:
- Enabling Concessionary Fares for Open-loop EMV Cards:
Kentkart’s fare collection system is powered by Account-based Ticketing (ABT). Thanks to that, all tariff calculations and payment processing can be performed online. With the help of this system disabled passengers do not have to visit the card center to issue concessionary cards or top up their card balances in advance because now they can simply use their debit or credit cards. Click here to read more about our concession EMV technology.
These are some core assistive technologies we develop to make public transportation more accessible. We continue developing equity focused applications that give opportunity for all citizens that use our systems.
Written by Hüseyin Çakır
Software Development Specialist at kentkart