Electric wheelchair gets stuck when boarding trains

My husband and I are in our 80s. He uses an electric wheelchair, and I use a mobility scooter.

He cannot walk, but I can get around if the distance is not too great.

When the certificate of entitlement for our car was about to expire, we wrote to the Land Transport Authority (LTA) asking if there were any concessions for the disabled. The answer was that there was a concession, but only if we needed the vehicle to go to and return from our place of employment.

At our age, there are no prospects of obtaining employment.

The LTA suggested that we make use of buses and the MRT.

We knew that with the bus drivers' help, boarding the bus would not be an issue.

So we did a dry run for the MRT by taking the train from Queenstown MRT station to the next stop, crossing over the platform and going back to Queenstown.

At the Queenstown station, I tried to follow my husband onto the train, but the platform and the train were not on the same level and the gap between the two was considerable. He got stuck and four passengers rushed to help him get into the train, the doors of which then closed, leaving me on the platform on my mobility scooter.

I have since used the MRT on my scooter, with only slight difficulty. But my husband's wheelchair is unable to get over the problem of the difference in levels between the train and the platform, and his small front wheels would get stuck in the gap.

We have no choice but to take taxis, which are getting more and more expensive for two old people with no income.

Is there anyone who can remedy this defect and enable us to use the MRT? I am sure we are not the only people facing this problem, since we see quite a few electric wheelchairs around town.

Any help from the LTA would be welcome.

Lucy Marie Armstrong (Mrs)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 13, 2017, with the headline 'Electric wheelchair gets stuck when boarding trains'. Print Edition | Subscribe