Technology provider Transreport has launched a new app aimed at making it easier and quicker for disabled passengers to request assistance across the UK rail network.

The Passenger Assistance app has been built in collaboration with The Rail Delivery Group, disabled passengers and accessibility experts, and enables users to “quickly request assistance for their train journeys in one app for the first time, offering an easy option which doesn’t require them to contact each train operator by phone or email prior to travel”.

The app can be downloaded from the Apple App store or Google Play, with users able to set up a profile based on their specific needs, “providing the level of detail they feel most comfortable with”.

Once travel information has been inputted, a request to book assistance is sent directly to the train operator who can arrange assistance across the entire journey, even where journeys span multiple operators.

Jay Shen, founder and managing director of Transreport, said that the company was “inspired by The Social Model that says people are disabled by the world around them, not by their impairment or difference”, adding that it was exploring how the solution could be applied it to other modes of transport including buses, coaches and air travel.

Meanwhile Sarah Rennie, commercial disability and access consultant and a member of the Transreport Accessibility panel, said:

“The app has been designed to improve the customer experience of disabled passengers and to solve an issue which has been going on for too long.

“Disabled and older people have faced an extremely challenging time during the pandemic and, as things open up, we must continue to develop systems more inclusively.

“Passenger Assistance will help to build trust and confidence in rail travel for those with access needs, for when they feel comfortable to resume their journeys.”

Last month Avanti West Coast bacome the first UK train operator to launch a dedicated social media forum for disabled customers.