Wednesday, 25 June 1980
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. Bruton: asked the Minister for Transport if he will state in respect of all public buildings used by each State body for which he is statutorily responsible, if easy access to such buildings by means of ramps, lifts or otherwise does not exist for persons using wheelchairs; if so, if he will indicate the name and location of each such building; the services provided therein; and the plans, if any, to improve the accessibility of the buildings to persons using wheelchairs.
Minister for Transport (Mr. Reynolds): In general the facilities available at the three State airports for persons using wheelchairs are satisfactory and include ramps and automatic doors. Interior lifts are also available except at Cork Airport but it is hoped to remedy this situation as soon as possible. The main CIE public buildings are also accessible to persons using wheelchairs.
I understand that some difficulties arise in relation to the car ferry terminals at Dublin and Cork which do not have ramps. Persons using wheelchairs are lifted with their wheelchairs up the stairs in each location by B and I staff, wheeled onto the car ferries and lifted, if necessary, to the cabin accommodation. Alternative access to the B and I vessels can be gained through the car deck where there is a lift available for the use of disabled passengers. Provision for a ramp has been made in the new car ferry terminal which is being constructed at Cork and I am asking the Dublin Port and Docks board to examine the situation at Dublin to see whether improved access can be provided.
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