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Car accessories for disabled drivers

When you struggle with mobility, it can be hard to maintain your independence outside the home, especially when travelling or driving. 

Thanks to recent advancements, there are now a wide range of adaptations and car accessories for disabled drivers and passengers to enhance accessibility, safety and comfort. Discover what solutions are available and how they can benefit your driving experience. 

Adaptive driving controls – Enhancing accessibility

Disability driving aids are specially designed systems that can be fitted to a vehicle to help people overcome a host of driving challenges.

These are particularly beneficial for people with reduced mobility, limited dexterity, physical disabilities, or limb amputations who find it uncomfortable, painful, or even impossible to operate the original functions. Popular driving adaptations include:

Hand Controls transfer the acceleration and brake from the foot pedals to your hand.

Electronic Accelerators move the function of acceleration from foot to hand with reduced effort required. 

Left Foot Accelerators can be fitted to the left of the brake pedal to allow operation with your left foot.

Pedal Modifications can benefit individuals with a range of disabilities that affect their ability to use conventional pedals.

Steering Aids enable the one-handed operation of a vehicle’s steering wheel; these simple adaptations are often used in conjunction with hand controls.

Remote Control Devices allow drivers with limited mobility to steer the car and operate a range of secondary functions, such as the indicators, horn, headlights and wipers.

Hoists and transfer aids – Facilitating easy access

Car accessibility aids can be installed to aid drivers and passengers when getting seated in and out of a vehicle. These adaptations are designed to facilitate easy access to a car, whether for a wheelchair user with complex physical disabilities, amputees or someone who is slightly unsteady on their feet. They are hugely vital to achieve full access for disabled drivers and passengers. 

Transfer Plates provide a temporary stable platform on which to pause and pivot either from standing or a mobility device. 

Person Hoists lift you via a fitted sling and hoists you out of your mobility device and into a standard car. 

Swivel Seats enable easy access by turning up to 90 degrees outside the vehicle, lowering, and even transferring from the vehicle entirely onto a wheelchair frame.

Side Steps provide an additional platform to reduce the step height from the ground to the vehicle floor in larger vehicles. 

Comfort and support accessories – Prioritising well-being

Ensuring an accessible driving experience is one thing, but it’s also important to optimise your comfort whilst driving, particularly if you’re taking longer journeys on a regular basis. There are a number of additional adaptations that prioritise your comfort: 

Seat Extensions are extended runners that increase how far a seat can slide backwards and forwards, creating more room in the footwell for a comfortable sitting position. 

Seat Buckle Assist offers an improved grip over the buckle and reduces the uncomfortable twisting often involved in fastening a seatbelt. 

Storage and accessibility solutions – Organising mobility aids

Mobility devices such as a wheelchair, powerchair or mobility scooter are often very heavy and cumbersome. This can make it difficult to physically lift and load the device into a car, particularly for the user who has reduced mobility. Loading and stowage equipment are designed for independent use and therefore eliminates the requirement to rely on someone else being with you in order to lift your mobility device into the car. 

Car Boot Hoists will lift your mobility scooter or wheelchair and load it into the boot of your car via lifting points and a button remote control. 

Rooftop Stowage can lift, stow and retrieve a manual wheelchair in less than 90 seconds.

Safety enhancements – Ensuring a secure drive

There are also car accessories for disabled drivers to increase safety and ensure a secure driving journey. There may be instances where you are travelling with a passenger who can be physical which is a dangerous distraction and therefore requires a safe solution. Or you are unable to move your neck and shoulders to perform imperative blind spot checks and need an adaptation to overcome this. 

Panoramic Mirrors greatly extend your field of view, reducing the need to turn to check blind spots which is crucial when switching lanes and entering slip roads.

Plastic Shields allow drivers to maintain audio and visual communication with passengers, without the risk of unwanted physical contact. 

Tech innovations – Leveraging assistive technology

Innovations in technology have in turn improved the overall user-friendly design of standard vehicles. Features such as adjustable seating controls, in-car voice assistance, automatic sliding doors and automatic boot opening/closing functions enhance the overall accessibility and convenience for disabled passengers and drivers. Specifically when getting seated, during their journey and also accessing the boot when parked up.  

At Mobility in Motion we offer a needs based assessment, select the right adaptations tailored to your individual needs and provide fuss-free installation and aftercare support. If you’d like to know more about our range of car accessories for disabled drivers, funding options and how they can help you, contact our team of friendly mobility experts online or call us on 0800 288 4422.