Friday, June 15, 2012

Wheelchair Ramps - How to Construct Them Within the ADA Specifications

Wheelchair ramps are a statutory necessity in building construction. The American with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) gives construction specifications of wheelchair ramps. These ramps enable disabled persons and patients to move into and out of buildings without undergoing undue difficulties. Hence, construction of wheelchair ramps to ADA specifications is mandatory. A few construction consultants recommend long-tread lower-riser steps. These long-tread lower-riser steps are safer and easier, compared to a 1:12 slope ramp due to a stronger ground grip. However, the wheelchair has to be tilted back a little, lifting the front wheels to provide enough clearance to negotiate the riser. As such, they are useful mostly for attendant-propelled wheelchairs.
A sloping route constructed with a slope greater than 1:20 is considered a ramp in ADA specifications. The ADA plans for wheelchair ramps are detailed in the schedules and appendices. The ease of using a ramp depends on the slope as well as the length of the ramp. Normally, ramp slopes in the range of 1:16 to 1:20 are preferred. Most wheelchair users can manage a slope of 1:16. However, a slope of 1:12 for a distance of about 30-ft. would be very difficult for disabled persons using wheelchairs. As such, the least possible slope has to be used in the construction of the ramp. Construction or alteration below the stipulated requirements is not permitted.
The ramps must have level landings both at the bottom and at the top of each ramp. To comply with ADA specifications of building wheelchair ramps, the landings must be as wide as the ramp leading into the landing. The minimum landing length has to be 60 inches. If there is a direction change of the ramp, the minimum landing size has to be 60 inches by 60 inches. Ramps and landings with drop-offs must be protected with curbs, railings, walls or projected surfaces to protect users from slipping off the ramp. Outdoor ramps and landings should be planned for complete water drain to avoid slipping on wet surface.
Handrails with a maximum height of 28 inches from the ramp surface to the top of the rail surface would be advisable. To assist children, a second set of handrails in between the top rail and the ramp surface has to be provided. The ramp should be constructed with handrails on both sides, if the ramp has a rise greater than 6 inches. The gripping surface of the rail has to be continuous. The ends of handrails should be rounded or joined to wall or post or floor to avoid injury to users.
Specifications of ADA require that the slope of a ramp should be one inch or lesser for every 12 inches of ramp run. ADA further specifies that the wheelchair ramp surfaces must be hard, stable and regular. Soft loose surfaces and irregular surfaces that could impede wheelchair movement have to be avoided. Carpets, loose sand or gravel and wet clay are normally considered soft loose surfaces. Cobblestones and the like are treated as irregular surfaces. Pressure treated wheelchair ramps are the most suitable method of ramp construction.
ADA recommends a static friction coefficient of more than 0.5 for surfaces used by normal persons. On the other hand, the static friction coefficient recommended for ramps is 0.8 to assist disabled persons using wheelchairs from slipping. Pressure treated wheelchair ramps would normally conform to the ADA guidelines of slip resistant surfaces.
The do-it-yourself wheelchair ramps are usually made of steel. They are modular in design for easy use by wheelchair persons. The ramp is normally of steel mesh type so that water and snow do not stagnate on the ramp. These ramps are available both with handrails on both sides or without handrails. The standard widths offered vary from 30 inches to 60 inches. Lengths are determined by the needs of the user. Steel turning landings are also available with sizes of 4 ft. by 4 ft. and 5 ft. by 5 ft.
Wheelchair ramps for GMC Safari as well as GMC Safari vans fitted with ramps for use by disabled persons and patients are available from several van dealers in most American cities. GMC Safari vans with wheelchair ramps can be purchased for prices ranging from $6,000 to $25,000, depending on the model of the GMC Safari and its condition.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Electric Wheelchair Ramps For Home and Building

Wheelchair ramps are inclined planes which allow wheeled equipments to be transported between different heights. Though initially built for wheelchairs' use, people with strollers, trolleys and carts can also make use of these wheelchair ramps. The multiple benefits of having a wheelchair ramp has made it a common sight inside publicly accessible buildings such as shopping malls and government agencies.In fact, some countries such as America has passed an act that dictates every building should be accessible by wheelchair users. Therefore, most buildings will choose a multipurpose wheelchair ramp over wheelchair lifts.

Wheelchair ramps, electric wheelchairs ramps, Portable Wheelchair Ramp

Wheelchair ramps, electric wheelchairs ramps, Portable Wheelchair Ramp

Most buildings will choose to have the permanent wheelchair ramp installed, this is done by bolting the ramp's handrail to the ground or cementing the whole structure to the ground. Permanent wheelchair ramps are for buildings which are have already identified the access point for the wheelchair users. Ramps are adjusted differently depending on vertical distance it needs to clear. If the stairs were to have a few steps only, a straight gently inclined wheelchair will be suitable. However, if the stairs are steep, a snaking wheelchair ramp will be more suitable as it will be unsightly to see a wheelchair ramp stretching all the way out to the main road outside the building. Moreover, the wheelchair ramp must adhere to international standards in terms of its steepness. It must not be steeper than 1 inch for 12 inches of distance. A gentle sloped wheelchair ramp is definitely the safest way for a wheelchair to ascend.

The traditional way of making wheelchair ramp is to use mainly concrete, however, there is a recent shift towards using steel and aluminum to build the ramp. The reason is that these metals are lighter than concrete and more importantly, they are constructed in a modular way. Sections can be welded together at the joints. It is also easy to remove and sell as used wheelchair ramps to other buildings.

The other type of ramp is the semi-permanent wheelchair ramp. These are structures which need a few strong men to carry into place and commonly used for events where manual and electric wheelchair users are expected. They are temporary set up and usually rented by the event organizers.

The last type of ramp is the portable type. This is usually made of aluminum and carried by the side of the wheelchair user. The lightweight of the portable wheelchair ramps makes it easy to bring around. They are also durable compared to other less desired materials such as wood.

As portable wheelchair ramps are quite personal to the manual electric wheelchair users, it is important the user considers what type of wheelchair is he using and the corresponding safest incline required of the portable wheelchair ramp.You should also know the length of the portable ramp and where will it be deployed most of the time. I will discuss a few of the portable wheelchair ramps available in the market: Roll up ramps can be unrolled into short ramps of 3 or 5 feet. Their light weight makes this kind the lightest of all wheelchair ramps and easiest to carry around. However, they are limited to use for lower steps.
Single fold ramps are sturdy and slightly heavier than roll up ramps.They can easily negotiate mid level inclines with ease. The only drawback is that single-fold ramp does not become smaller when folded, it still takes up a considerable volume to the wheelchair user. Hence, it will troublesome to bring this along your travels. Multiple fold ramps come in 4 sections which are folded to form a heavy 12 feet portable wheelchair ramp. For their robustness, it can handle the heaviest of wheelchairs and steep steps, it can be used to enter vehicles too.

Track ramps is the last variation of portable wheelchair ramps. The length is adjustable depending on the steps and steepness it needs to overcome. Track ramps are sold in pairs. Each ramp forms a track to keep the movement of the wheelchair in a straight manner up and down the ramp. Wheelchair users will not have the danger of veering off the track. Sometimes, stair lifts for building are used as replacement for ramps.

Used electric wheelchair ramps have different specifications depending on the use of it within the environment. In the case of home use, it recommended to use a 3:12 slope that denotes one foot of ramp for every 3 inches vertical rise. As for business use, the ratio will be 1:12 which is a gentler slope than residential use.

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Sunday, June 10, 2012

Important Wheelchair Etiquette

wheelchairs, wheelchair etiquette

Some of the people don't know how to handle or deal with people who are using wheelchairs. This problem is perhaps due to the people's different way of thinking towards the person, people's reluctance to follow good manners, or simply people's ignorance about wheelchair etiquette. But to evaluate this, there is a crucial effect towards the people who are using wheelchairs. They may not feel good or they maybe develop a sense of insecurity or they would tend to have low self esteem. But not only that, this may cause a psychological effect that may lead to the slow recovery of the person.

If you are a member of a family in which one of the family members is using wheelchair, then there is a need for you to develop this wheelchair etiquette. In this way you can help him or her recover faster in the sense that you are giving importance to his development as a person who is using a wheelchair.

Here are the useful guides or etiquette on how to act or respond properly to people who are using wheelchairs.

Always put in mind that a person sitting on a wheelchair is not sick always. So, if you want to extend your help, always as if he or she needs it.

If you are talking to the person, be sure that you are in a good direction for him to clearly see you and understand you better. It is advised to sit with the same level to the person's positions, especially if you have long conversations.

Don't add the person's wheelchair weight by leaning to his or her wheelchair. Actually, the wheelchair is already part of his or her body weight already. So, avoid it.

If you will have group meetings or any event or occasion, give a special attention to person sitting on a wheelchair. Make sure that he knows where the bathroom is, and place him near to it for easier access. But if cannot do it alone, you can assist then.

If your children will keep on looking to a person sitting on a wheelchair, don't scold them directly. Find a right time to let them understand why people are using wheelchair for them to not to do that silly action again which affecting the person too.

Respect the person who is sitting on a wheelchair. Don't just do whatever you want to do like joking while patting or pushing a bit. These minor actions may not be healthy for them.

Always, think that being a person in a wheelchair doesn't mean of losing hope of a person's life. Actually, this is helping him to become more self reliant and independent. So trust him too.

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Friday, June 8, 2012

Advantages Of Owning A Scooter For The Home

Home life can be difficult in a wheelchair. A wheelchair can be big, bulky and often times it is not going to be an electronic chair but a manual chair. A scooter is going to replace the wheelchair giving you a much easier time in moving about the home, and while completing tasks for yourself.

Being Disabled Doesn't Mean You Can't Be Self-Dependent
For those who find it difficult to get around in the home, a scooter that is lightweight, which will cut corners quickly and is slim, will be a great choice. A scooter for your personal needs is one which will put you in the drivers seat, so you can move about from room to room, to make your supper, to get the mail, and even to let the dog out the door.

A motorized scooter in the home can be used without interrupting other lives.
An electronic scooter is an option you have for a quiet life in the home. Many motorized chairs are not quiet, and bulky wheelchairs will mark up the walls as you continually bump into things in the home. A quiet scooter is going to create a mobile space for yourself, so you can move about from area to area, with no loud continuous noise. Imagine being able to still hear the television even as you are driving off to the kitchen for a snack! It is possible using a motorized scooter in the home.

If you live alone, and you are disabled, it is easier to get around the house using a scooter. A scooter is going to help you prevent falls, and breaking a bone, because you will be relying on the scooter to get from room to room. When you are home alone, you feel safe, secure and able to do just about anything in your scooter. A scooter is a personal mobility chair that will ease the stress on your body, and on your mind because you will be able to do more things for yourself.

Don't wait for others to come to your home to do things for you. Using a scooter you can move around better and more often. You can head outside and talk the dog for a walk, or visit with your friendly neighbors. A scooter will give you a peace of mind and spirit as you overcome your medical problems.

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Crazy Wheelchair Tricks

Nice and amazing Manual Wheelchair Tricks, but this tricks is "please! don't try this at home, school, or anywhere"

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Everything You Should Know Before Buying A Mobility Scooter

During my many years in the mobility business I have acquired a vast knowledge of what to look for when purchasing a mobility scooter or power chair. Never rush into making your purchase as buying the wrong product can be very costly indeed. I have been monitoring many on-line auctions recently and as yet I have not managed to find anything that stood out to me as being a real bargain. Many of the products I have seen for sale are inferior quality and do not appear to be a recognized make. Please note that there are lots of companies in China and other countries where labour is cheap are manufacturing mobility products. These mobility products are being imported to the UK and have very little backup if things go wrong. These products are popular for many people because of the reduced costs of buying them. Unfortunately the reduced price is reflected in the build quality and many of them break down within the first 24 months.

My first tip must be do not buy a Scooter unless it has a recognised brand name such as:

Pride Mobility Products Roma Medical (Shop rider) Days Medical (Strider) Sunrise Medical (Sterling)

The above is not a complete list of recognized Brand names but in my opinion it is a good list to stick by. All these companies have head offices in the UK and dealers throughout the country all who offer a full back up service including spare parts.

Spare parts for scooters can be very expensive and it is very easy to buy a second hand scooter that requires immediate attention.

Time to be aware

I have found that people usually sell their scooter after they have not used it for a while and realised it is of no further use to them. When a scooter has been stood for a while the batteries tend to sulphate very quickly leaving irreparable damage to the battery. Depending on the size of batteries needed the cost can be between £80 and £400 per pair. Mobility scooters and power chairs are all battery powered so if you do buy a second hand one make sure the batteries have been charged regularly (every time the scooter has been used )or at least once a week if the scooter has been out of use.

Electronic Mag Brakes

The breaking system on all scooters and power chairs are controlled by an electronic controller and the common fault that goes wrong with them if the machine has not been stored or used correctly. The brake can seize up due to the damp air that can be found in many sheds and garages in the UK.

The average price of a mag break is £100 and that is before someone has diagnosed the fault and charged you for the fitting of it. The main controllers are full of components that are similar to the types of components you would find in a television. So the question you must ask yourself here is If you left your TV set in a shed for 6 Months do you think it would work properly if you plugged in back in? A main controller for an average scooter can cost from £200 up to £400.

Scooters come in all shapes and sizes and it is very important that you choose the right one.

Some scooters are allowed on the road and some are not.

A Class 3 scooter must be capable of a top speed of 8 mph and must have a speed control switch that allows the speed to be halved instantly when being driven on the pavements. The Scooter must also have Lights (front and rear), traffic signal indicators, hazard warning lights and an audible horn. If the vehicle is to be driven on or across a dual carriageway it must also be fitted with a flashing beacon that stands 6 foot in height. Rear view mirrors are also essential.

A class 2 scooter will only be allowed to drive on the pavements and cross minor roads where traffic control is in operation. Many Class 2 machines now have lights and indicators fitted to them as standard and it is important that you do not get confused between the two classes of machine.

Recently it has been very popular to buy fold up scooters. I have seen many portable scooters advertised for sale lately, both new and second hand. I must admit that I am shocked at what some people will do to sell these portable scooters. Do not get me wrong here. I am not against these products; on the contrary I really think they are a valuable addition to the mobility business. I just want people to be aware that they are not designed to travel very far even when new.

I have recently seen advertisements boasting that some of them have a range of 25 or miles. This is massively over exaggerated. If a scooter is fitted with 12 amp/hour batteries as so many are and they are carrying a person of average weight in average conditions. It is likely that from new they will only have a range of 6 to 8 miles. As they get older you will be lucky to get to the end of your street without having problems. Portable scooters are ideal for shopping centres and parks but if you want to go any further I suggest you invest in a class 2 or 3 scooters by one of the previously mentioned brands.

Another thing about portable scooters is they nearly all have solid tyres, plastic seats and no suspension which can prove quite un-comfy after a period of time. Some of these scooters also boast a 21 stone capacity. I am 10 stone 4 pounds and they struggle to pull me up a slight incline when they are brand new.

Should I buy a 3 or 4 wheeled scooter?

There is something at this point I think I need to make very clear. No scooters are designed for indoor and outdoor use. If you want something that will be effective for both uses you should be looking at a powerchair / Electric wheelchair. 3 wheeled scooters are far more manoeuvrable than 4 wheeled ones. 3 wheeled scooters are also very handy if you have long legs or large feet as they have much more leg room. Always try and match your size and weight before you buy.A scooter can be a very useful machine if you get the right one but if you do not it can be very costly.

The main advantage of a 4 wheeled scooter is purely psychological. I find that all scooters made by reputable companies are very stable due to strict guidelines that are enforced upon them but I must mention that there are some machines on the market that I would not recommend to anyone so please are careful. In the fairness of business I will not say which products I will not recommend as it is just my opinion. I am, however always willing to recommend any quality products for your needs.

Weights, distances and speed.

This can be difficult as each scooter can vary depending on how it is made. There have been full sized 8mph scooters with 2x50 amp hour batteries as standard that have a maximum load weight of only 18 Stone and on the other had there have been some lightweight scooters on the market with 2x12 amp hour batteries that are supposed to do 4 mph and carry a max load of 21 stone. For more information on the performance of each scooter it is best to ask the seller or manufacturer directly.

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Advantages Of Owning A Scooter For The Disabled

I am disabled and I proud, I use power scooter and power wheelchair because I have Polio and Muscle Atrophy, I find this article is helpful so I wanna to share it with you:

The disabled and the handicapped often times find it difficult to get around in stores, in malls, in many large settings, even in their own home. If you are one of the millions of people in the world who are suffering from a disability, an injury or from an accident, you can use a scooter to put yourself back motion without pain and embarrassment.

disabled, power scooter, power wheelchair, handicapped, Three Wheel Scooters

Using A Scooter For Your Personal Needs
A scooter can be used to take you to the store. If you live in town or near the store, you can ride your scooter to the store, shop while riding the scooter and carry your goods home on your scooter. A scooter is a great method of giving those who are unable to walk or those who are unable to walk long distances the ability to be self-dependent.

Using your own scooter also means you have the advantage of always having a scooter that is fully charged and ready to go. Often times those who are disabled will enter retail centers only to find the scooters are out of power, and are useless. To provide yourself the freedom of mobility with a fully charged scooter, bring along your own scooter and leave all the worries behind you.

disabled, power scooter, power wheelchair, handicapped, Three Wheel Scooters

Using A Scooter To Visit With Friends
Living in a house or an apartment in the city doesn't mean you have to be at home all the time. If you are able to get on the scooter, and drive the scooter, you are able to ride your scooter to visit with your friends at the local pub, at the local movie theatre, or even in their homes. Ride your scooter where you want, without having to depend on anyone and your disability will seem less important because you are still able to get around, and get out of the home.

disabled, power scooter, power wheelchair, handicapped, Three Wheel Scooters

Three Wheel Scooters For The Disabled
Electric movements are made possible using the handlebars that are located in front of you while sitting in the three-wheel scooter chair. The handles look a bit like bicycle handlebars will look. Soft rubber grips are located on each side of the handlebars for those who are sitting in the scooter for a few hours to have easy mobility with the hand controls. For the disabled, the ease of using a scooter is all a choice. Many have electronic handles, joysticks, and even foot controls. Enjoy your freedom using a scooter of your personal choice for mobility.
 online Mobility Scooters store

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