If you experience a disability that prevents you from walking, you may have the idea that there is no way for you to drive.
This is not true because there are a number of vehicle adaptations that can assist you in operating a vehicle. Not all adaptations require customised vehicles or costly investments.
Mobility is a key aspect of engaging with the community and doing the things that you want to do. A wheelchair can often seem like an obstacle, but it shouldn’t be something that prevents you from achieving the freedom of driving a vehicle.
Here are a few vehicle adaptations that may help you as a disabled driver.
Vehicle Adaptations for Disabled Drivers
There are many ways to adapt your vehicle to suit your needs. Here are a few of the most common ones, but don’t lose hope if you’re finding that these don’t work for you. There are hundreds of ideas online for people under different circumstances.
1. Hand Controls
A lot of disabilities have to do with the use of one’s legs and feet. If you are someone who experiences difficulty operating a vehicle because of a disability in the lower half of your body, hand controls are an excellent way to combat this issue.
You don’t need to control the speed of a vehicle with your feet. There are adaptations that allow a person to accelerate and decelerate with the use of a lever. This lever sits next to the steering wheel and controls speed and brakes with through the use of one’s hand.
2. Wheelchair Hoists
If the use of your lower body isn’t the issue, but you do require the use of a wheelchair, there are options that accommodate you. The use of a wheelchair hoist allows one to get access to their car, even if it is higher off the ground, without the assistance of anyone else.
These can come in a few different forms. Wheelchair accessibility comes in the form of ramps, tail lifts, and wheelchair hoists. All of these are viable options for someone who requires the use of a wheelchair.
3. Foot Steering System
If you’re someone who experiences a disability in your upper body, there are ways to operate a vehicle with only your feet. Controlling the vehicle with only your feet does not require as much of an investment as you would imagine.
It only requires that you install a steering apparatus that is suitable to your feet. Of course, you will want to consult with a licensed professional to do so. It is a pretty seamless way to drive, and it can be done entirely with the use of your feet!
Always Consult Professionals
Some of the adaptations listed above may be things that you are able to install yourself. Even so, it is always recommended that you consult with a licensed professional who understands your specific car, as well as the equipment that you’re installing.
You will also want to research licensing laws regarding the use of vehicle adaptations. You may be required to take exams and drivers ed with the use of your newly installed equipment.
Research More Adaptations
There are thousands of ways for people with disabilities to experience the freedom of operating a vehicle. In fact, there are even more non-vehicular adaptations all around the net.
Do your research and you may find that there are vehicle adaptations that will greatly improve your life! If you’re having difficulty finding useful adaptations, contact us and we will do our best to help.