Use of Rear-Facing Position for Common Wheelchairs on Transit Buses

Document Type


Publication Date


Subject Area

planning - surveys, mode - bus, mode - bus rapid transit, literature review - literature review


Alameda Contra Costa Transit District, Americans with Disabilities Act, Australia, British Columbia Rapid Transit, Bus rapid transit, Case studies, France, Germany, Great Britain, Interviewing, Literature reviews, Mississauga Transit, Rear-facing position, Securing and joining equipment, State of the practice, Surveys, Sweden, Transit buses, United Kingdom, Wheelchair securement, Wheelchairs


This synthesis will be of interest to transit agency staff and those who work with them in dealing with common wheelchair securement on transit buses. It offers information on existing programs in many countries and documents transit agency experiences for the benefit of others considering similar deployments, in particular with respect to the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and to its use in U.S. Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) systems. The report describes the state of the practice with respect to the use of rear-facing position for accommodating "common wheelchairs" (as defined by the ADA) on large transit buses (more than 30,000 lb) and identifies pertinent issues related to its transferability to the U.S. context. This report integrates the information obtained from a literature review, gathered from many sources and countries. Agency surveys of all Canadian transit systems that have adopted the rear-facing position, case studies, and interviews with key experts in several other countries (the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Sweden, as well as communications with Australian experts) were conducted to obtain information and to offer better insights. Case studies were conducted at British Columbia Rapid Transit (BC Transit), Victoria, BC, Canada, and Mississauga Transit, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. Additionally, extensive discussions were held with Alameda-Contra Costa Transit (AC Transit) staff, Oakland, California--the first U.S. transit agency to design a rear-facing position in their 2002 order of transit buses to be used in a planned BRT deployment.


Permission to link to report given by TRB