Transit Operator Evaluation of Three Wheelchair Securement Systems

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - paratransit, organisation - regulation


wheelchair, wheeled mobility devices (WhMD), accessible public transit vehicle (LATV), securement


The safety, ease of use, and independent use of three wheelchair securement systems and three different types of wheeled mobility devices (WhMD), including a manual wheelchair, a powered wheelchair, and a three-wheeled scooter, were evaluated by eight vehicle operators of a large accessible public transit vehicle (LATV). The securement systems included a forward-facing four-point tiedown system, a prototype forward-facing autodocking system, and a prototype rear-facing-wheelchair passenger (RF-WP) system. The eight LATV operators transported wheelchair-seated passengers in each wheelchair securement system, after which they completed a questionnaire. Operators responded generally positively to the autodocking and RF-WP systems because they were observed by the drivers to be quicker and easier to use and allowed more independent use by wheelchair-seated passengers compared to the four-point tiedown system. From all three securement systems, operators favored the forward-facing autodocking system, because no assistance from operators is required to use it and most users preferred the forward-facing orientation in the vehicle. The autodocking system was perceived to be safe and easy to use by wheelchair- and scooter-seated passengers. These study results promote the need for alternative and improved securement systems that can be used by wheelchair and scooter-seated 88 passengers that travel in LATVs in forward- or rearward-facing directions. Ideally, future securement solutions should not require assistance from LATV operators for their operation and should allow wheelchair- and scooter-seated passengers to ride public transportation safely and independently.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by NCTR, copyright remains with them.