Transporting people with disability

This page includes information for drivers about working with people with disability, including driver training and responsibilities, TUSS and wheelchair loading.

If you are not already a taxi driver but would like to be, you will need to apply for and be granted a passenger transport driver (PTD) authorisation.

Are you a passenger transport vehicle owner or authorisation holder? Visit Wheelchair accessible vehicles for specific information about vehicles equipped with modifications to provide safe on-demand transport services for people seated in wheelchairs.

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  Driver education and training

As a driver for an on-demand transport service, you have a duty of care to your passengers. These passengers may have a disability, be vulnerable or have diverse accessibility needs. 

If you’re driving a rank or hail (taxi) wheelchair accessible vehicle (WAV), you need be able to demonstrate that you are competent in the safe loading, restraint and unloading of a passenger in a wheelchair.

Nationally recognised units of competency outline performance standards for particular workplace skills. TLIC2040 is the unit of competency related to providing wheelchair accessible taxi services to passengers with disability (see link below). 

You need to be able to demonstrate that you can meet the standards of two parts of TLIC2040:

  • Element 3 (Assist passengers into and out of a taxi in a manner suited to their disability); and
  • Element 4 (Drive a taxi used by passengers with disabilities).

The Department of Transport doesn’t mandate driver training requirements. Your on-demand booking service may require you to complete specific WAV driver training to be able to drive for them. 

Training in the Perth metro area

Black & White Cabs (WA), trading as 13 MAXI, is currently the dedicated multi-purpose taxi dispatch service in the Perth metropolitan area. Contact them for further information about WAV driver training (see link below).

Training in regional WA

If you are operating in regional WA, please direct any queries about WAV driver training to the on-demand booking service you drive for (or intend to drive for).

Opens in a new window Black and White Cabs

  Transporting an assistance animal

Assistance animals come in all shapes and sizes and are highly trained to meet behavioural and hygiene standards. 

Under the law, passenger transport drivers in WA must not refuse to carry an assistance animal or an assistance animal in training. 

Refusing to carry an assistance animal is an offence. You can be issued an infringement of $9,000 if you refuse to carry an assistance animal in your passenger transport vehicle.

Partnering with assistance animals helps many people with disability to live independently and provides a range of physical and emotional benefits. We all have a responsibility to ensure people who partner with assistance animals are supported in accessing transport that meets their needs.

For further information, visit the Australian Human Rights Commission website (below).
 

External Link Australian Human Rights Commission website

Mobility scooter (gopher) safety

WAVs are only designed to transport people seated in wheelchairs. 

It is not safe to carry, load or unload passengers in WAVs while they are seated on a mobility scooter (gopher).

Passengers who use a mobility scooter must transfer from their scooter before it is loaded into your vehicle. A mobility scooter cannot be used as a seat while people are being transported.

Note: this advice is based on the Australian Standard AS 2942-1994. Wheelchair Occupant Restraint Assemblies for Motor Vehicles.

Visit Wheelchair accessible vehicles for more information about WAV standards and modifications.

  Taxi User Subsidy Scheme - driver responsibilities

The Taxi User Subsidy Scheme (TUSS) is a subsidy available to certain eligible people with disability travelling in taxis. 

Some TUSS participants may be able to travel in conventional taxis. Other participants may have accessibility needs that mean they need to travel in a specially modified wheelchair accessible vehicle.

All taxi drivers in WA are legally required to accept TUSS vouchers as part payment for a fare. 

Penalties apply if the TUSS Guidelines (see below) are not followed or if drivers refuse to accept TUSS vouchers.

  How to accept a TUSS voucher

Before the trip

Before the start of the trip, drivers must: 

  • Obtain the passenger’s TUSS card and TUSS voucher booklet.
  • Complete the following fields on the TUSS voucher:
    • Date (on stub and voucher);
    • From (pickup location, on stub and voucher);
    • TUSS Participant Number;
    • Expiry date;
    • Driver ID number (stub and voucher);
    • Taxi vehicle licence number plate;
    • Start time;
    • Odometer reading at the start of the trip;
    • Street address and suburb that the trip starts and ends at;
    • On-demand booking service authorisation number;
    • Job number;
    • Wheelchair used (yes/no) (for green and purple vouchers only); and
    • Tariff 3 (yes/no).

Check the picture below to see which boxes need to be filled out before a trip starts (highlighted yellow).

TUSS voucher before trip example
TUSS voucher before trip example

After the trip

At the end of the trip, the driver must complete the following fields on the voucher:

  • Fare paid by passenger (stub and voucher);
  • Driver’s signature (stub); 
  • Finish time;
  • Odometer reading at the end of the trip;
  • To (drop off destination, on the stub and voucher);
  • Total kilometres;
  • Total cost of the fare; and
  • Subsidy value. 

Check the picture below to see which boxes need to be filled out after a trip ends (highlighted yellow).

TUSS voucher post-trip example
TUSS voucher post-trip example

 
Make sure you sign the Driver Declaration on the back of the voucher. Unsigned vouchers will not be paid. Check the picture below to see which boxes need to be completed on the back of the voucher. 

TUSS voucher driver decleration
TUSS voucher driver decleration


After you have signed the Driver Declaration:

  • remove and keep the completed TUSS voucher from the booklet; and
  • return the booklet and TUSS card to the passenger.

DoT has developed a visual TUSS how-to-guide for drivers. Read How to complete TUSS vouchers: a guide for taxi drivers below, or print a copy to keep in your taxi.

  Tips for completing TUSS vouchers

Follow the below tips so your TUSS vouchers can be processed quickly, ensuring timely payment.

  • Write clearly and legibly.
  • Use the correct date and time formats – 24 hour time, dates DD/MM/YYYY.
  • Check that all TUSS participant and trip details are entered correctly before submitting your vouchers.
  • Make sure you sign the Driver Declaration on the back of the voucher – unsigned vouchers will not be paid.
  • If there are sections where you are writing the same answer for each trip (such as the on-demand booking service authorisation number or PTD authorisation / Driver ID number, consider making and using a stamp.

DoT has developed a visual TUSS how-to-guide for drivers. Read How to complete TUSS vouchers: a guide for taxi drivers below, or print a copy to keep in your taxi.

  Submitting TUSS vouchers for reimbursement

After completing a TUSS voucher for a taxi journey, the driver is entitled to payment for the subsidised fare from the Department of Transport (DoT).

These payments are administered by a third-party voucher processing contractor – they accept TUSS vouchers, check that the vouchers are valid, and pay the taxi driver (or the driver's agent) the appropriate amount.

The current voucher processing contractor is Black & White Cabs.

Drivers should submit the completed TUSS voucher in person or by post to:
Black & White Cabs
1/33 Frederick St
Belmont WA 6104

Once validated, Black & White Cabs will credit the driver's nominated Australian bank account within five working days.

Opens in a new window Black and White Cabs

  Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle Modification Grant 2022-23

To help increase accessible transport options for people with disability, the Department of Transport (DoT) provides grants of up to $20,000 to assist eligible operators with the cost of installing a wheelchair hoist and restraint systems in a wheelchair accessible on-demand rank or hail (taxi) vehicle.

Expressions of interest (EOIs) for the WAVMG for 2022-23 have now closed.

The grant process is now proceeding with those whose EOI met the eligibility criteria.

The industry will be advised when the EOI recommences. 

Regional Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle Taxi Service Grant Scheme

To help ensure that regional Wheelchair Accessible (WAV) taxi services can be provided where sufficient demand exists, the State Government has committed to an increased budget of $1.5M over four years to:

  • introduce a new Regional WAV Taxi Service Grant; and 
  • improve the established WAV Modification Grant, increasing the grant amount from $15,000 to $20,000. 

About the Regional WAV Taxi Service Grants

There will be two types of Regional WAV Taxi Service Grant:

  • Grants of up $65,000 to support the establishment of new taxi services where none exists.
  • Grants of up to $45,000 to support existing WAV taxi service providers to replace an ageing WAV taxi or purchase an additional WAV taxi vehicle to meet demand. 

$260,000 will be dedicated per annum (for four years) towards Regional WAV Taxi Service Grants.

DoT will communicate important updates through regular industry newsletters.

Grants to be piloted in Broome

Broome has been chosen to pilot the Regional WAV Taxi Service Grant Scheme due to its lack of an existing WAV taxi service and its popularity as a tourism destination.

The Department of Transport (DoT) will begin stakeholder engagement in Broome from September 2022 to confirm the demand and feasibility for a WAV taxi service, followed by an Expression of Interest process to award the grants. 

Outcomes from the pilot will be used to inform the roll-out of the grants to other regions, with priority given to towns without a current WAV taxi service and where demand shows a sustainable service could operate.

If you are interested in the Regional WAV Taxi Service Grant and are currently outside of Broome, please email us at ondemandtransport@transport.wa.gov.au.

External Link Media statement: Boost for wheelchair accessible taxi services around the State
External Link Media statement: Broome to pilot new regional wheelchair accessible taxi grants
Page last updated: Wed Sep 21 2022 2:00:55 PM