Adapting A Car For A Disabled Driver
- Posted by:
- car adaptations, disabled driver, disability
- Posted date:
Are you considering adapting a car for a disabled driver? We look at the adaptations available under the Mobility Scheme and how they can benefit you.
Adapting a Car for a Disabled Driver
A lot of people with disabilities worry that due to their disability, it will be near-impossible or very difficult for them to purchase a car, or that the costs associated with having a car adapted specifically to their needs will be beyond their financial means.
However, this is not always the case, and nowadays, many disabled people are able to drive at their leisure in their own cars.
Before a vehicle is purchased, you should always ensure that the car that you are looking at is actually able to be adapted to meet your needs.
Unfortunately, not every vehicle has the functions in place to allow for adaption for a disabled driver. It is a good idea to get in touch with the company that will be carrying out the adaptations to your car in order to confirm that the car you are wanting to buy will be suitable for the necessary modifications.
Getting a car altered and adapted so that the vehicle is suitable for your needs will always cost money. But, it may be possible to get some kind of financial assistance towards the costs associated with adapting a car. We would highly recommend researching this before making a purchase of a specific car.
We recommend this because you wouldn't want to find yourself with a vehicle, and then find out that the modifications would be too expensive, then you're stuck with a vehicle you cannot use.
Adapting Your Car
Making sure that your car is fully adapted so that driving is comfortable and safe, as well as being easily accessible, can all be achieved by purchasing and installing a selection of specific items to your car.
These items can include hand-operated acceleration controls, hand-operated brakes, a control column accessory to assist with steering, knobs attached to the steering wheel in order to make turning the wheel much easier, adaptable mirrors, rotating seats, extra safety belts, and more.
If you suffer from a weakened arm, then it is possible to have your vehicle changed so that the horn and direction indicators and controlled by the feet.
If you are a user of an artificial arm fitted below the elbow, then it can be possible to drive using a specific limb attachment that will be fastened to the steering wheel. If you are a driver who has lost the use of both of your arms, then it is even possible to adapt a vehicle in order to change steering to be foot controlled.
For drivers who may have a weakened leg, then it can be highly useful to drive a car that uses automatic transmission, rather than manual. This will completely remove the need for a clutch pedal. In some cases, it is also possible to move the pedals to another position so that a stronger leg can be used.
Semi-automatic clutches are also a possibility, enabling a driver to use a car with a manual gearbox but without the need for a clutch pedal. If you are a driver with no leg use, then it is also possible to have the whole box adapted for hand control.
We would recommend that if you have recently received an adapted car, you should first test it out on some short distance drives just to ensure you have full control and comfortability over the vehicle before you try using the car for a long journey.
If you are a wheelchair user, then it may be difficult for you to transfer from a wheelchair directly into your vehicle. This process can be helped through the use of accessories.
Lifting boards and belts are commonly used. Some vehicles can be specially adapted so that your wheelchair could be driven directly into the car.
Adaptations available on the Scheme
Driving adaptations can make a big impact on a person's vehicle experience.
The adaptations can enable a person to drive where it may in another situation not be possible. These adaptations can assist with speed control, signalling, and steering. As well as other minor and major driving mechanics.
The adaptations can vary from small and simple attachments to replacing all of a vehicle's existing controls and internals with a system that is designed specifically for you.
In the majority of cases, the vehicle's original controls can still be used even when there are adaptations in place. This means that other drivers can still operate the car.
The most efficient way to lift a wheelchair into a car is through the use of a stowage system, two examples are a rooftop stowage unit or a boot hoist.
Both of these options will work simply at the touch of a button.
They will take the weight of a wheelchair or scooter and then guide the unit into either a car boot or onto a rooftop stowage area.
When you are considering how you will access your vehicle as a wheelchair user, a Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle may be the first idea that comes to mind, but you should remember that this is not the only option available.
In fact, there are a number of different adaptations which can be installed into a standard car which will allow for easier access for wheelchair users.
Transfer plates can be fitted to one side of the car seat, which can provide a smooth surface between the wheelchair and the car seat.
This surface can be used to help with the transfer and can then be folded away after use. Swivel seats are another choice, they can help massively with getting in and out of the car seat, and are even available in powered versions.
Under the Mobility Scheme, these adaptations can be fitted for no extra cost.
MotorHome Towbars provide cars, scooters, wheelchairs and more, so if you're interested, please reach out to us, and we can adapt your motor for your disability.
Are you looking for disability car adaptions in Lincoln And Lincolnshire? We have a huge range of adaptations available and would love to discuss this with you.