Abu Dhabi Int'l launches trial of first autonomous wheelchairs

Abu Dhabi Int'l launches trial of first autonomous wheelchairs
Published: 26 September 2019 - 7:30 p.m.
By: Louise Birchall
The trial is being run in collaboration with the air transport communications and information technology company, SITA, and the personal electric vehicle supplier, WHILL.

The autonomous wheelchairs will allow passengers with restricted mobility to navigate easier through the airport, sister title Arabian Business reported.

The trial comes ahead of the possible introduction of the autonomous wheelchairs at the new Midfield Terminal depending on how the trial goes at AUH.

The wheelchair trials, which will take place throughout the remainder of 2019, will map the airport to ensure that passengers can use the new technology effectively upon its official introduction.

The wheelchairs will offer passengers up-to-date boarding times and gate information, an automatic brake function and sensors to detect any obstacles in the path of the wheelchair.

Bryan Thompson, CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports, said: “Abu Dhabi Airports is committed to providing an optimal passenger experience to those using our airports, and ensuring that our facilities are easy to access for all is an important part of that commitment.

“With the beginning of these trials, we hope to be able allow restricted mobility passengers and their families freedom of movement around Abu Dhabi International Airport, and the opportunity to enjoy all the airport has to offer."

Porters will remain available to provide wheelchair access to passengers arriving at Abu Dhabi International Airport who require mobility assistance.

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