Wooden Escalators removed due to danger posed to Guide Dogs | Guide Dogs NSW/ACT

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18 October, 2017

Wooden Escalators removed due to danger posed to Guide Dogs

Guide Dogs NSW/ACT and Transport for NSW staff at the opening of the new escalators in Wynyard.

After several accidents involving our Guide Dogs and after many years lobbying the NSW Government, Guide Dogs NSW/ACT was finally successful with Transport for NSW agreeing to remove the wooden escalators at both Wynyard and Town Hall stations in Sydney.

Wynyard Station

We are happy to announce that on 4 September 2017, Wynyard’s York Street entrance was reopened to customers following the replacement of the site’s wooden escalators and the construction of a lift.

Guide Dogs NSW/ACT welcomed the completion of the escalator replacement which addresses safety concerns for all customers including those who are vision impaired and their Guide Dogs.

“Safe and reliant public transport including railways and surrounding infrastructure is essential for people who are blind or vision impaired, as it is the primary mode of travel for accessing education, employment, and their community,” Guide Dogs NSW/ACT Community Education and Access Advisor, Jennifer Moon said.

“We appreciate that Transport for NSW has recognised and acted upon the risk that the wooden escalators posed to the safety of Guide Dogs and their handlers and are pleased that their modern replacement will lead to a safer and more accessible travel experience for everyone.”

Guide Dogs Access Officer Nicole Holmes with her Guide Dog Toby on the new escalators.

Town Hall Station 

The removal of the two wooden escalators at Town Hall station on platforms 5 and 6 has been approached in two stages. One wooden escalator was shut down in January and we are happy to report that it was reopened in August, now with an accessible escalator. 

We are delighted to inform you that the LAST wooden escalator in the Sydney train network was shut down mid-August. It will be reopened with a new accessible escalator in the early part of 2018.

We are extremely pleased to have influenced Transport for NSW with removing all hazardous escalators in their train network. Now all passengers, including people using Guide Dogs, can safely access all train stations in Sydney.