Friday, 12 September 2014

There is a new railway

station associated with the Showground. It replaces another station on the other side of a major highway. That station was inaccessible for many people. There were only steep stairs to the platforms.
This station has three platforms - three because the line I use is a single track. It is a single track due to the lack of forethought by past governments and the unwillingness to spend money by the present one.
I had not tried to use the station until yesterday but I decided it would be wise to investigate it while they were plenty of people around. If something went wrong then there would be someone to help.
Access should be good but there are some issues. Yes, there are stairs again. If you are able to use stairs then access is probably fine. The stairs are steep so elderly people, people in wheelchairs, parents with baby buggies and cats on tricycles need to use the lift. Oh yes, the lift is quite a good size and I can fit the tricycle in there along with another five or so adults or a few more children. They had to put up a paper sign telling people to push the button which says "go". Right.
We went up. There is a covered walkway here - over the part which crosses the lines. That's fine. Then there is a long u-shaped ramp which goes to ground level. No riding down that.
I eyed off the sign - and I broke the rule. Safety comes first. I rode at less than walking speed and right to one side - behind the father with the baby buggy.
The railway man at the bottom just nodded at me. He is only there on a temporary basis for the Show.
I went from there, as an experiment, a considerable distance up two side streets to see my friend in the nursing home. I needed to deliver some documents to her. She was dozing in bed. There have been issues with pain relief and oxygen delivery in the past day or so. I did not stay long.
I thought about it as I prowled back to my pedals. Yes, I would try the journey back by train as well. It would take about the same amount of time as pedalling if I had the time of the train correct.
I pedalled up the ramp on my return. The man at the bottom actually waved me up saying, "Just take it slowly."
I did and then it was into the lift and down to the platform again.
Yes, it's fine but I am still wary. If there were people around it would not bother me but the station will not be well used in between events at the Showground.
I have visions of being stuck in the lift or the lift being out of action. I have visions of spending the night there.
Is this foolish of me? Did anyone think it might be nice to put in proper emergency access - or was it considered to be "too expensive"?

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