Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Two inches too tall

Today I wrote a letter.  I think it was an important, albeit poorly written, letter.  Here it is:

To whom it may concern,
Today I had a serious incident that could have resulted in tragedy. 
While walking with my children, I came across a man in a motorized wheelchair whose front wheel became stuck in the space between the metal track and the rubberized pad between the tracks.  It is approximately four inches, the perfect width to get a wheel stuck.  I myself have had a similar problem with my stroller wheels, but as an able bodied person with a relatively light load was easily able to remedy the situation.  In this case, the load was a 1200-pound wheelchair, and the person could hardly walk.  You’ll be happy to know that after helping the gentleman out of the chair and off the tracks, myself and a motorist were able to give the front corner of the chair enough lift, that the motor could get the wheel out of the track.  The whole ordeal took about four minutes from when I arrived.  Thankfully, no train came at that time, but if a train had been coming, we would have been helpless.
This is a problem that should be resolved.  Perhaps something as simple as small angle wedges being cut into the rubber pad, so that the person could back up or move forward to the “emergency exit” would suffice.  It would not have to be a long wedge, so it would not impede other foot traffic.
This email is with regards to a specific crossing located in Perth, Ontario, specifically the crossing on Drummond Street.  I suspect there are similar problems throughout Ontario.
Thank you for your time and consideration of this matter.

It wasn’t even my wheelchair and I was stressed to the max about what this gentleman would do if a train smashed his wheelchair.  I wrote to Canadian Pacific Railway, the Minister of Community and Social Services and the Perth town council.  I have no idea who is responsible for theses sorts of things, but I’m sure they’ve never even considered it.  I hadn’t. 

If you want to get involved with the issue, here’s a letter you can copy and paste:

To whom it may concern,

Today I was told about a serious incident that could have resulted with injury to a person and their property.

While walking with her children, my friend came across a man in a motorized wheelchair whose front wheel became stuck in the space between the metal track and the rubberized pad between the tracks.  It is approximately four inches, the perfect width to get a wheel stuck.  It was not as simple as picking the wheelchair up and moving it.  The wheelchair was 1200 lbs, and the person could hardly walk.  You’ll be happy to know that after helping the gentleman out of the chair and off the tracks, my friend and another passer-by were able to give the front corner of the chair enough lift, that the motor could get the wheel out of the track.  The whole ordeal took about four minutes.  Thankfully, no train came at that time.

This is a problem that should be resolved.  Perhaps something as simple as small angle wedges being cut into the rubber pad, so that the person could back up or move forward to the “emergency exit” would suffice.  It would not have to be a long wedge, so it would not impede other foot traffic.

This email is with regards to a specific crossing located in Perth, Ontario, specifically the crossing on Drummond Street.  I suspect there are similar problems throughout Ontario.

Thank you for your time and consideration of this matter.


And here’s the people you can tell:
Ministry of Community and Social Services: http://www.mcss.gov.on.ca/en/mcss/contact/index.aspx
Town of Perth Council members: jfenik@perth.ca, jgemmell@perth.ca, jboldt@perth.ca, jbrown@perth.ca, jgraff@perth.ca, emcpherson@perth.ca, bpeterkin@perth.ca

1 comments:

  1. Did anything ever come of your letter? (p.s. now officially addicted to your blog).

    ReplyDelete

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