TRAM introduces three new improvements to the service information accessibility as part of European Mobility Week. These projects are part of the company's move towards universal accessibility, i.e. the elimination of barriers for people with additional difficulties such as visual or hearing impairments.
The Tram is installing NaviLens at all its stops and on all its trams, both on the Trambaix and Trambesòs networks. This intelligent QR code remote reading technology allows the visually impaired, but also the general public, to find their way around the tram facilities using audio-description of their contents: name of the stop, network, line, direction, destination, changes to the service, incidents, etc.
Users only have to download the NaviLens application to be able to recognise these colour codes at a distance of up to 10 metres, a length that covers almost the entire tram platform, taking into account that there will be a QR on each side of the stop. The advanced technology of these codes also allows them to be read on the move, without focusing the device's camera. This means almost automatic detection to improve the experience for the visually impaired passenger.
In addition, the Tram and Google are working together to offer real-time timetables of the entire tram network to users of the online search engine. Thanks to a specially created access, the technology company can have the timetables modified every few seconds and provide passengers with the most accurate information possible. Whether they search using Google Maps, the mobile app or the TRAM website, the timetables will be totally updated to reflect the real-time service.
The information on timetables and incidents in real time can also be found on the TRAM Open data for use by any technology developer.
Finally, the tram.cat website has amended various aspects of its display to meet the criteria for a double A site. This means that it has applied 9 new requirements for accessibility for people with hearing and visual difficulties. These requirements are:
- Provide a contrast ratio of text and images of at least 4.5:1, with some exceptions.
- Provide the ability to increase text by up to 200% without loss of content or functionality.
- Use text rather than images to convey information, except in essential situations. TRAM has found other, equally valid solutions for the regular user who does not need this requirement.
- Ensure that headers and labels describe the subject and purpose of the page.
- Ensure that the keyboard focus indicator is visible, with a few exceptions.
- Ensure that the language of the content can be determined by the software, with some exceptions.
- Ensure consistent navigation, with repetitive layouts, between pages.
- Identify components that have the same functionality in a coherent way between them.
- Providing suggestions upon detection of input errors, except if it poses a security risk or defeats the purpose of the content.
These three new advances will therefore form part of the TRAM's universal accessibility strategy, which is constantly being developed with other facilities such as the audio-description service for vending machines, participation in the pilot test for transporting people with scooters and setting up inductive magnetic loops for people with hearing difficulties throughout the tram network.