We understand how important accessibility is for our passengers. Transit Services has a 10-year Accessibility Plan that explains how our services are accessible and what our long-term plan is to improve and maintain accessibility.

Here are some of the highlights from our plan:


Did you know that all of our buses are 100% accessible? Thunder Bay Transit buses have a kneeling feature to lessen the step or a ramp for easy access. Lift+ buses have a ramp if you are unable to board with the stairs.

If accessibility equipment is not working, an Operator will request a new bus. If you notice that a bus feature is not working, report it to the Operator.

Bus Stops and Transfer Hubs

Not all bus stops are accessible. When a stop is not accessible, Thunder Bay Transit Operators will allow passenger with disabilities to board and disembark buses at a safe location close to the bus stop. 

Courtesy Seating

Courtesy seating is for passengers who will benefit from having a seat near that front of the bus including seniors, expectant mothers, adults with small children, and any other passenger who may benefit from a seat. If you are sitting in one of these seats, respect its purpose and give your seat up to someone who needs it.

Emergency Evacuation of a Bus

In the event of an emergency, the Operator will make sure you and other passengers are safe and away from traffic at all times. If you have a disability and require assistance, advise the Operator so that appropriate assistance can be provided.

Mobility Devices

Thunder Bay Transit conventional buses can carry two mobility devices; Lift+ specialized buses can carry four mobility devices. There are size restrictions of manual wheelchairs, electric wheelchairs, and scooters that will fit on our buses. If you are considering purchasing a new device or would like to know if your device will fit, here are the size guidelines. These dimensions include all add-ons such as bumpers, wheel bars and baskets.

Remember that some devices may have a turning radius that makes it difficult to board even if the device would fit based on the size. You can call Transit to arrange an assessment and practice boarding a bus with your mobility device. 

Thunder Bay Transit - no weight restriction; maximum 28"W x 48"L

Lift+ - 750 lbs combined weight of passenger and device; maximum 30"W x 48"L

Once you are boarded on the bus, it is your responsibility to lock your brakes and/or power off your device. All passengers must be secured on Lift+ buses; however it is your decision if you would like to be secured on Thunder Bay Transit. If you would like to be secured, ask the Operator as your are boarding the bus. 

On-board Announcements

All Thunder Bay Transit buses have a system inside the bus that announces the next stop visually and audibly. Please do not interfere with the announcement system by having loud conversations or playing music without headphones.

Pre-boarding Announcements

All Thunder Bay Transit buses have a system that will announce the route information when the bus doors open. This helps our visually impaired passengers know what bus has arrived.

Priority Seating

Priority seating is for passengers with a disability. These seats are located at the front of the bus. You must respect and obey the purpose of the designated seating area - if you do not have a disability, you must vacate the seat for a passenger with a disability.

A person with a disability is not required to move for another customer with a disability. Use of these seats is on a first come, first served basis.

You are not required to leave a bus to make room for a customer with a disability.

Bus Operators will not intervene to enforce the requirement. We ask that you show consideration for those whose need is greater than your own.

Service Animals

Service animals and guide dogs are welcome on the transit system. You are responsible for your service animal at all times. The Operator may ask you to provide proof from a health care professional stating that your service animal is needed due to your disability.

Support Persons

A support person can travel with you free of charge on both of our services. You have to have an ID card that shows that a support person is required. You have to complete a support person application form for Lift+ or a support person application form for Thunder Bay Transit. Bring your completed form to Transit Services.

Quantum Wheelchair Securement System 

Starting in spring 2022, Thunder Bay Transit will introduce two new Nova buses equipped with the new Quantum Wheelchair Securement System.

The Quantum Securement System is:

  • A fully automatic wheelchair securement system
  • Rear facing
  • Allows for operation by the passenger or Operator
  • Quick securement in under 25 seconds
  • Intended for use with scooters or wheelchairs between 19 to 30 inches wide

Here is an instructional video to familiarize yourself with the Quantum Securement System:

Important information when using the Quantum Securement System:

  • Let your Operator know upon boarding if you would like to operate the Quantum Securement System on your own or if you would like the Operator to assist.
  • Centre your wheelchair or scooter on the backboard and position your device as close as you can to the backboard.  Remove any obstacles or barriers that impact your ability to position your device.
  • Ensure you are facing the back of the bus.
  • Always turn off power or apply your wheel locks.
  • Check positioning of your device to ensure that the arm of the Quantum is pressing against the wheels of your mobility aid.  If not, reposition.
  • Passengers travelling with wheelchairs that have angled wheels are not recommended to use the Quantum system, as the arms of the system may have difficulty securing properly.

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