ST Engineering and Acumen Design Associates have partnered to announce the launch of ACCESS, a new aircraft lavatory to offer passengers with reduced mobility (PRM) more space.

The addition of a moving wall means the lavatory is able to expand, offering 40% more space for passengers. This will allow access for wheelchairs and  a carer if needed, to use the facilities with ease. It is also a solution which provides PRM with more privacy. 

Acumen Design Associates have produced this product drawing from feedback providing by disabled passengers in product testing sessions. Many of the introduced features are aimed to make transfers easy and quick as well as more hygienic and pleasant. The addition of more grab bars, anti-slip floors and innovative hygiene technology, plan to improve the experience for all passengers.

Mary Doyle, Founder and Owner of Rocket Girl Coaching, stated: “As an independent manual wheelchair user for many years, I’ve experienced the good and bad of aircraft lavatories… and believe there are four main things which can improve the on-board experience: more space, highly sanitised work surfaces, greatly improved physical supports for unassisted transfer and anti-slip flooring.”

Cassandra Sexson, Director of Business Development at ST Engineering, added: “Having worked with Acumen to identify the main accessibility issues with current lavatory designs, ACCESS is able to offer airlines an innovative new product that tackles one of the biggest issues faced by disabled passengers when they fly.”

The expansion can be easily maneuvered by a crew member using a latch on the outside wall and when not expanded, the lavatory can still be used as normal. There is no reduction in galley space or seating capacity with no necessity for airlines to change cabin layout to fit this new installment. 

“Many disabled passengers avoid flying because of the compromises they have to make – especially when using the on-board lavatory,” said Daniel Clucas, Senior Designer at Acumen Design Associates. He added, “ACCESS can ensure disabled travellers have the space, privacy and support features in place to never have to worry about that again.”

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