The ministry of civil aviation has notified the standards and guidelines for easier access for persons with disabilities to airport infrastructure, the facilities and features that the airlines need to provide and security protocols. The notification on the ‘Accessibility Standards and Guidelines for Civil Aviation’, which was issued on Monday, is in line with the mandate set out by the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.
The section on accessibility features to be provided by airport states that the operator will have to provide accessible and reserved parking along with drop-off/pick-up points. The parking area should also be connected to the building entrance through an accessible route.
The guidelines call for a helpdesk near the entry gate, proper signages, designated seating to be provided for passengers with disabilities in check-in area, and in the security hold area near the boarding gates within viewing distance of communication boards, and within hearing range of audio announcements as well. The guidelines also lay out the standards for accessible toilets and drinking water facilities.
The standards assert that all airports should provide either an aerobridge or an ambulift to board the aircraft to facilitate the movement of people with reduced mobility. It is stipulated that at domestic airports where only ATR operations are carried may be exempted from the clause.