Away from everyday and “routine” routes, people with limited mobility often encounter difficulties that make mobility difficult or impossible. MobiHelfer II aims to develop a system in which personal help can be organised in restrictive situations with the help of modern communication technologies that can be used by as many people as possible.

Client: bmvit, Mobility of the Future, 6th call for tenders

Duration: September 2016 to August 2018 (24 months)

Project partners: TU Vienna, Institute of Transport Sciences; WU Vienna, Institute for Transport Economics and Logistics; Wiener Hilfswerk; equality; IT-eXperience Informationstechnologie GmbH; Association of visually impaired people

LOI partners: ÖBR- ÖSterreichischer Behindertenrat; Club 81; Hilfsgemeinschaft; Lebenshilfe Niederösterreich; BHW Bildungs- und Heimatwerk Niederösterreich; Praxisoase; Land Oberösterreich; SBB – Schweizerische Bundesbahnen; Westbahn Management GesmbH; Raaberbahn; zhaw – Zuricher Hochschule für angewandte Wissenschaften; Wiener Linien Holding; Graz Linien

Project description: Due to various support measures, people with reduced mobility are generally well organised within the framework of their everyday mobility. Away from everyday and “routine” routes, difficulties often arise that make independent mobility difficult or impossible. This also applies to people with temporary restrictions on mobility for whom many everyday routes are not routine due to their “new” restrictions. The aim of the MobiHelfer2 project is to develop a system based on modern communication technology that provides targeted support, especially for non-routine routes, through the placement of helping persons where independent mobility is noticeably more difficult or where out of concern routes are not taken at all.

Persons who are willing to help can register once in the MobiHelfer system and make themselves available temporarily as a helping person if available. The MobiHelfer system can be used to request help from people who are so restricted in certain areas that they are only able to travel with great difficulty or not at all. MobiHelfer provides an interface between “helpful” and “needy” people. Arrangements can be made either via a smartphone application or by telephone with the involvement of a service point.

The MobiHelfer system was developed in its entirety and the required application or the possibility of telephone assistance was prototypically implemented and tested in field trials. For the tests, the system including the service centre and helping persons were set up on an experimental basis and persons in need of help were specifically trained to request help via the system. The technical reliability of the system as well as its acceptance and benefits in terms of increasing autonomous mobility were determined. The result of the MobiHelfer2 project is a concrete statement as to whether the envisaged system for selective support of persons with limited mobility can function technically and organisationally through direct mediation of helping persons and is accepted by those concerned. Through the prototypical development and testing of the system, all relevant foundations have been created for an effective and efficient implementation. With the MobiHelfer system, the majority of people with limited mobility should be able to be mobile on their own, even outside of daily routines.

Contact: DI Dr. Bernhard Rüger