Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles
Wheelchair accessible vehicles are cars or vans that have been adapted so that a wheelchair user can travel safely in their wheelchair. This usually means that the floor has been cut out and lowered, a ramp added and seats have been removed.
The best wheelchair conversions allow the wheelchair passenger to travel within the family, either between the rear seats or in the front next to the driver. They are also as well finished off as a normal car and allow the wheelchair passenger to feel safe and secure and have good views out of the windows- wheelchair passengers can get car sick if they are not properly catered for.
Wheelchair Car Coversion
As with everything else, it is a competition between cost and comfort – To cut out the floor of an upfront wheelchair accessible vehicle can cost £10,000.00 when the car is new so a sensible compromise that caters for all the family is always the aim. It will be different for every family.
Special belts are fitted to all wheelchair accessible vehicles to anchor the wheelchair at 4 points and there will also be a seatbelt. In this way, the wheelchair passenger travels as safely as a passenger strapped in with a standard seatbelt. All straps must always be used – in an accident an unfastened wheelchair is very dangerous.
Wheelchair accessible vehicles are referred to in various ways - ‘WAVs’, wheelchair adapted vehicles, wheelchair d cars, disabled cars etc etc but they all have the same strapping down system. In addition to the popular lowered floor and ramp type, larger vehicles may simply be fitted with lifts. There are also winches available that pull a manual wheelchair into the car.