As the weather begins to get colder and frostier, north-east residents are being urged to remember the difficulties that people with disabilities may have.
Whether it is a visual impairment or a physical disability, winter weather can pose problems for those who may struggle to get around as a result.
Transport has been cited as an issue for many, which may leave people reluctant to leave their homes, resulting in social-isolation – which can be common among elderly or disabled people.
Other concerns include vehicles parked on pavements and snow being left in piles at the side of the road.
Neil Skene, fundraising co-ordinator at North East Sensory Services (NESS), spoke to the Evening Express about his own experiences, as well as what he has heard from other users of NESS.
He said: “The conditions don’t affect me so much as others because I am blind, but for many people it can be quite dull and a lot greyer.
“For myself, the biggest problem is I use a guide dog, and a big problem is pavement parkers.
“That forces us out on to the road.
“It affects people using dogs and long canes, when there’s snow piled up at the side of the road the dog can’t cross it, as it becomes a barrier which the dog won’t cross.
“The most helpful thing for us is to keep pavements clear.
“It’s also about thinking where you place things on the pavement, if cafes put signs outside, we can’t see them.”
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Neil added that another issue with the cold weather was people not paying attention.
He said: “People are looking at their phones and walking with their heads down because it’s cold and they want to go home.
“You tend to have people walking into you because you can’t see them and they don’t see you as they’re looking down.
“It’s just being a bit mindful.”
A spokesman for Aberdeen Action on Disability said: “One of the main issues is transport, it’s not always easy.
“It’s an ongoing issue with access.
“Buses aren’t as bad but it’s sometimes a problem getting to the bus stops.
“It’s a shame because it means people might be more reluctant to leave the house.”
There are a number of services in the north-east which can help support people throughout the winter period and are available to help safeguard against social isolation such as NESS and Aberdeen Action on Disability, as well as others.