Continue the Conversation: AVs Driving Employment for People with Disabilities
For instance, most American's spend about $700/month on a privately owned vehicle (gas, car payment, insurance, maintenance, repairs, etc.). So... more »
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Apologies that this is off topic.
We need universal design for the vehicle accessibility and then for interface accessibility for AVs, designs that allow for the redundancy of... more »
The Federal Government needs to take the lead in developing standards for designing accessible vehicles.
Cities have already begun using federal grants to purchase AVs for shared use (shuttles).
AVs should use a similar example to the partnerships between local governments, not-for-profits and large employers to provide accessible transportation to work. This model has proven viable for providing transportation to the transportation disadvantaged. For example, the Hope Nework in Michigan - https://hopenetwork.org/transportation-services/
A business case was made for looking at cost through the lens of savings to employers and healthcare providers when employees or patients show up for work or appointments, rather than missing these activities due to a lack of transportation.
On-demand AVs could be combined with microtransit solutions to serve rural areas.
Need to create a cost structure that works for rural communities. The challenge of deploying AVs to rural areas is that the cost increases as population density decreases, trips become longer, and there are more "dead miles," or trips where the vehicle is empty.
AV developers and policymakers should consider the privacy of user data, including disclosure of disability needed to request an AV equipped with the appropriate accessibility features.
States should provide wrap-around services to people with disabilities to ensure successful use of AVs, including travel training.
TNCs are partnering with cognitive disability advocacy organizations to provide rides to work, subsidized by the state.
Communication between the vehicle and the user is key; supports should be put in place to assist a user that has experienced a "failed trip" (in other words, has not arrived at the intended destination).
AV developers should design features that reduce anxiety, such as confirmation that the user has entered the right vehicle and has arrived at the desired destination, special lighting, and trip progress alerts.