As a public transportation agency, NJ Transit has an obligation to meet the needs of all riders, regardless of their mobility, visibility, or auditory challenges. Over time, we have reported on how well—or not well—they are providing services. We know that Access Link, which provides services to medical appointments and other destinations for those unable to independently ride scheduled transit, shadows NJ Transit bus lines—but what about those who can, with reasonable accommodation, navigate regular bus and train routes? One thing that is imperative for such individuals is good signage—where am I, where are elevators or restrooms, when is the next train coming, etc? Our inspection trip to Hackettstown showed the deficiency of such signage at Secaucus, where finding the elevator was a noted challenge. We also learned that NJT policies, which look good in theory, are not always put into practice—a number of our South Jersey members missed their connection when it came in on a different track than originally planned.
Report from the Chair: Sept./Oct. 2022
In addition to my role as Lackawanna Coalition chairperson, I am a member of SCDRTAC, the Senior Citizens and Disabled Residents Transportation Advisory Committee of NJ Transit, and I find more and more common concerns. At the last SCDRTAC meeting, member Sara Thompson gave a presentation on issues that affect riders with hearing limitations, and they are some of the same issues that have been discussed recently on our informal e-mail list: quality of PA announcements on trains and in stations; use of the visual station announcement system on railcars, and even the translucency, rather than transparency, of train windows, especially on the newer dual-level cars.