Arrogant passenger demands guide dog move on escalator
A commuter was caught on camera this week demanding a blind man move his guide dog so he could pass on a Tube escalator.
Amit Patel, who went blind in 2013 due to a haemorrhage behind his eyes, was travelling down the moving stairwell at London Bridge with his dog Kika on Tuesday.
He was soon approached from behind by a middle-aged man who accused the pair of blocking the way.
At the time of the incident, Mr Patel – an ex doctor – was being led to his train by a TfL worker.
In the video, which was posted on a social media page set up for Kika, the man can be heard saying: ‘I want to get past’.
To which the staff member replies: ‘Where would you like him to go?’
The commuter then suggests moving the dog to one side so he can pass – but is told that the animal is a ‘guide dog’ and that cannot be done.
The TfL worker adds: ‘It’s just two seconds of your life’.
Speaking to the Standard after the incident, Mr Patel said the incident left him feeling ‘powerless’.
He said: ‘Moments like this are destroying, it really knocks my confidence.
‘I will dwell on it all day, it just makes me think is society really like that? It makes me feel like a little boy again.’
The exchange was caught on a camera placed on Kika’s back.
The camera was installed a short while ago in a bid to work out why Kika occasionally became spooked when travelling.
Posting the video online, a spokesperson wrote a message on behalf of the dog.
It said: ‘If you see a Guide Dog on a escalator please wait patiently behind.
‘Under no circumstance should you try to push through! I’m trained to hold my ground to keep dad & myself safe.
‘Great job by TfL staff who was with us.’
Mark Evers, Chief Customer Officer for London Underground, said: ‘It is important that customers wait behind anyone travelling with a guide dog on the escalator and not push past, so that customers with guide dogs can travel safely.
‘We’re committed to providing a transport network that is accessible for all and ask everyone to consider the needs of their fellow passengers.’