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Unite Cab Section Looks at Heathrow Accessibility

By Peter J Rose
With thanks to Heathrow Branch’s Stuart Hope, Gill Gold & Heathrow Taxi Marshals

Transport for London (TfL) is currently undertaking an Accessibility review across all of London’s taxi ranks. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has also just completed one of its own. Unite is of course participating in both. Firstly by meeting and responding to the CAA’s review but also by working with TfL on accessible ranks via the London Cab Ranks Committee (LCRC). Unite is Secretary for the LCRC.

As part of this work, Unite is currently visiting Heathrow’s terminal buildings to see just how accessible taxis are from a passengers perspective. Heathrow’s newest, the new Terminal 2 – The Queen’s Terminal would seem to be causing the most concern at the moment, with drivers reporting passenger complaints about finding cabs.

As a prelude to a full report to TfL and Heathrow management, here are just a few of the problems we found…


Are passengers to take the ‘up’ escalator to find a taxi?


Passengers at the Lifts, but still no sign of the cabs!


Even when passengers do manage to find the correct lifts and get down to the right level for the cab’s, it’s still a challenge to get in one. Looks like they have to cross two roads and jump a barrier!

These were just a few of the problems we found, there were many others. Obviously Unite will be passing on what we found to the relevant authorities, TfL, CAA and Heathrow management. Hopefully they will take on board the problems faced by passengers needing cabs, taking extra note that wheelchair users face even greater challenges.

Unite cab Section is also pressing for passenger accessible taxi ranks at all Crossrail stations. Crossrail trains have fully accessible carriages.

This article appears in the Summer 2016 issue of Cab Trade News

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