Jonathan Attenborough and his guide dog, Sam, were traveling in a crowded train where despite his constant requests, none of the passengers cared to guide him to a priority seat.
A visually impaired man was fuming after passengers on a packed train refused to give up their seats for him. Earlier this week, Jonathan Attenborough along with his guide dog, Sam, was traveling from Edinburgh's Haymarket station to Perth. Reports state that the blind 30-year-old boarded the train with the assistance of a ScotRail staff, who did not guide him towards a priority seat as the train was very crowded. Assuming that the other passengers would definitely guide him to a seat, Attenborough asked people around him if there were any seats available. To his dismay, his repeatedly asked question was responded to, but with cold silence.
The student from Newburgh, Fife said, expressed he is "losing faith in humanity" after being forced to stand half an hour next to a train door. Appalled by the way people around him treated him, he took to Twitter to blast ScotRail for not intervening during his hell-like journey. Uploading a few images of his distressing situation he targetted Scottish transport secretary Michael Matheson and wrote: Completely unacceptable passenger assistance from @ScotRail to leave me and my guide dog in the doorway of the train. I asked several times if there was any spare seats and not one passenger responded. Doesn’t give me much faith in humanity @MathesonMichael.
In one of the images, Sam can be seen sitting on the floor surrounded by a minimum of four people and another photo shows the guide dog struggling for some space as he is wedged between two bags. Attenborough pointed out it was crucial for blind and visually-impaired people to be seated so that they don't feel disorientated. In addition to this, he was also worried about Sam, who could have easily hurt his tail or paw by being accidentally crushed by the crowd. After this event, he said, "It’s important for any blind or visually impaired people to be seated when on moving transport as the movement of the train can be very disorienting, I also like to be seated so that my dog is safely out of the way so that his tail or paws don’t accidentally get stood on by other passengers."
Completely unacceptable passenger assistance from @ScotRail to leave me and my guide dog in the doorway of the train. I asked several times if there was any spare seats and not one passenger responded. Doesn’t give me much faith in humanity @MathesonMichael pic.twitter.com/zpAGR9H2Sd— Jonathan Attenborough (@JonAttenborough) 12 November 2019
"It’s difficult to hold on, to keep my balance when having to stand on a moving train, and also hold onto my dog at the same time to ensure that he is okay in situations like this too," he added according to The SUN. Urging ScotRail to improve its service for the disabled he conveyed, "I did not come across any ScotRail staff on the train as it was so crowded that the train conductor couldn’t make his way through the train until it was clearer. I think the customer service experience has to improve from ScotRail especially for disabled people. I also think that some kind of government regulation around assisted travel for disabled people should certainly be looked at as well."
Thank you so much #AXSChat for having me as a guest tonight! It’s been such a pleasure chatting with you all this evening. I hope everyone had enjoyed it as much as I have. A very goodnight from me and my guide dog, Sam pic.twitter.com/HqmQuzXZSs— Jonathan Attenborough (@JonAttenborough) 5 November 2019
In reaction to his horrifying journey he shared on Twitter, several people responded with equal disgust. @KristyBreaks wrote: I’m appalled that no one offered you a seat! What is wrong with people? Another @mayhassett1 expressed: Jonathan I'm very sorry you and your guide dog Sam were left in this awful position by Scotrail, and horrified not one person spoke back in answer to your question about a seat, being so mean as to stay quietly hogging their seat. Appalling unkind shameful behaviour.