Driving with a Disability or Medical Condition

steering wheel

There have been many wonderful advances in the auto industry in recent times. One area that has improved drastically is technology that enables those with a disability to operate a vehicle both safely and confidently. There are many adaptations that can be made to a car so that people with various disabilities can get behind the wheel and enjoy the freedom and independence that motoring provides. This is important and particularly if the individual does not have somebody that they can rely on to help them to be mobile.


Adaptations

Adaptations can include hand controlled pedals, a joystick to control steering and remote controls to operate standard vehicle controls. Additionally, there are wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAVs), which can easily be accessed by a wheelchair user who can then safely ride as passenger or, in some cases, drive the automobile.

Learning

If you have a medical condition or a disability, you can learn how to drive in an adapted automobile and there are specialist driving instructors who can help you to drive safely. You will need to pass the same test that other motorists undertake, but if you pass, you will only be licensed to operate a vehicle with the same adaptations. You must also let the DVLA know if your condition worsens at any point.

Insurance

In terms of insurance, it is illegal for an insurer to charge more because of a disability unless they can prove that it is justified. It is relatively straightforward to arrange cover in modern times as companies have a better understanding of vehicle adaptations. There are also specialist insurance providers for disabled motorists.

Schemes & Benefits

If you receive mobility allowance, you can exchange this to lease an adapted automobile as part of the Motability Scheme. This excellent scheme has helped over 600,000 people to get mobile and enjoy a new-found sense of independence. Disabled motorists can also benefit from zero vehicle tax and you will be able to park closer to your destination with a Blue Badge – Blue Bade holders can also get a disabled parking bay outside their home (provided they have a vehicle registered to the address). There are also concessions on some crossings, bridges and tunnels.

The many great adaptations made to vehicles in recent times has transformed the landscape for those with a disability. Many are now able to learn how to drive and join the roads safely and with confidence, plus there are also a number of benefits that can make driving much easier and more affordable for those with a disability.

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