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Adaptive Driving Aids For Your Car

Adaptive driving makes it possible for the mobility-impaired to drive vehicles easily and safely. Driving is an important part of life. The mobility-impaired have to meet the challenges of life just like any other person. However, normal cars cannot be used by the mobility-impaired because they have special needs. Adaptive driving helps people in wheelchairs to gain independence, move in and out of the vehicle, and drive the vehicle with assistive technologies.

Hand Controls

Hand controls are integrated to the vehicle to enable easy operation. Levers and buttons are used to apply the brakes. Remote switches are provided for secondary controls. The driver can use hand arm movement to execute the controls, accelerate, push the brakes forward or twist the grip. Lights, wipers, horns, and indicators are controlled with buttons. Other controls such as signals turns, dimmers, and even accelerator can be operated using the hand.

Some portable hand controls are also provided with adaptive vehicles, which can be installed depending on varying needs. These controls can be carried along in the luggage. Power brakes and steering controls are provided with most of the hand controls. Electronically assisted hand control is also provided to manage primary and secondary driving controls. Devices such as amputee ring, spinner knob, and quad fork are attached to the steering to assist driving. The hand controls enable the driver to use both the hands to control the vehicle, providing a safe and smooth drive.

  • Hand Controls: Provides links to some places where you can get adaptive hand controls.
  • Mobility Products & Designs: A good place to find adaptive hand control products.
  • Sure Grip: One of the leading suppliers of traditional hand controls.
  • Freedom Wheels: Offers a number of hand controls like spinner knob, palm spinner, quad fork, and more.
  • Performance Mobility: Take a look at their range of adaptive hand controls.

Pedal Extensions

Pedal extensions help the person with short legs to reach pedal. In this kind of arrangement, the brakes and accelerator pedal height are raised. The pedal extension enables the driver to apply the brakes with reduced effort.

Left Foot Gas Pedal

The left foot gas pedal requires professional installation in which modifications are done for the braking and acceleration systems. For a missing leg, the left foot gas pedal is used as it prevents crossovers. In left foot gas pedal adaption, the pedal is provided on both sides of the brakes.

  • Able Data: A list of places to find left foot gas pedals.
  • Kempf: A description of its electronic left foot gas pedal.
  • Planet Mobility: Take a look at this left foot gas pedal.
  • Evaluation: Transport Canada conducts an evaluation of left foot gas pedals.
  • PLFA: Provides a portable left foot accelerator for use in different cars.

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Matt is the Managing Partner at Leland-West Insurance Brokers, Inc. He started with the firm while still a college student, way back in 1984. According to Matt his only remaining hobby is Motorsport ... because its all he can afford ("will work for tires"). Reach him at matt@lelandwest.com