Autonomous transportation startup May Mobility has begun developing a wheelchair-accessible prototype version of its driverless shuttle vehicle.
The initial round of feedback gathering from the community of people in Columbus, Ohio, has recently concluded.
TechCrunch reports that May Mobility’s design includes accommodations for entry and exit, as well as for securing the passenger’s wheelchair once it’s on board during the course of the trip.
The company reportedly learnt from the first round of feedback that its design needs improvement in terms of making the ramp longer to facilitate more gradual on-boarding and disembarking, as well as optimising pick-up and drop-off points.
According to TechCrunch May Mobility still plans to work on implementing some improvements before the deployment of its vehicles.
May Mobility co-founder and COO Alisyn Malek on stage at TechCrunch Sessions: Mobility said, ‘For us, our focus is how we can transform cities, making them safer, greener and more accessible for everybody.’
‘How can we make transportation easier for everybody? And part of that is we really have to think about ‘everybody’,’ added Malek.
May Mobility’s vehicles are specifically low-speed electric vehicles. As there is no ADA standard for autonomous vehicles or LSEVs yet, the company thinks it makes sense to work directly with community members to get a head start on accessible design, reports TechCrunch.