Manchester

Guard suspended over disabled ramp row in Manchester

A train conductor has been suspended after a disabled passenger filmed him refusing to help him board a carriage.

Qamar Khaliq captured the guard's refusal on his mobile phone as he pleaded with him to provide a ramp so he could board a train at Manchester Piccadilly on Saturday.

Northern Rail has since emailed the 35-year-old to apologise for "the problems" he faced during his journey.

A company spokesman said a full investigation is under way.

Mr Khaliq, however, has said the suspension of the train conductor has not made a difference to how vulnerable he now feels.

"I know there were a couple of other people involved in what happened to me and I am still going to avoid travelling by train," he said.

"I don't feel as safe anymore by any means. Also I still don't know why he would not let me on, that has not yet been explained.

"The company are investigating so hopefully it will be revealed then."

'Extremely rare'

Mr Khaliq said the 10-minute journey back home to Guide Bridge in Audenshaw ended up taking him nearly two hours because he had to travel home by bus.

"When I asked for his assistance he made a no sign at me and said 'I can't take you, you will have to get the next one'.

"When I asked him why he refused to answer me and then refused to speak at all and just ignored me."

Pete Myers, head of service quality for Northern Rail, said in the email to Mr Khaliq: "I know that nothing I can say will reassure you at this stage, but we do take incidents like this very seriously indeed, and thankfully they are extremely rare.

"Incidentally I can confirm that we have taken steps to suspend the conductor from duty while our investigation progresses.

"I do hope that you can travel with us in confidence in the future and that once our investigations are complete we can meet together."

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