15 Steps to Operate a Wheelchair Safely Outdoors

 

  1.  Stay on even and flat surfaces. Avoid inclines, staircases, slopes, and curbs to prevent any harm. Uneven surfaces can make wheelchair get off balance and it may cause harm when someone is pushing the wheelchair.

 

  1.  Avoid sandy areas rather it’s at the beach or on the sidewalk. Sand builds up on tires and causes the wheelchair to be off balance. If avoiding sandy area is not preventable, make there is someone who can help clean the sand from the wheels.

 

  1. Be aware of the weather. It is important to check the weather before you leave when using a wheelchair. Try to avoid going out when it is raining and snowing because it will make the ground slippery and slick. Any surfaces with water or puddles are bad for the wheelchair. It can cause the chair to slide, spin, or tip over. If you need to go out when it is raining or snowing, have someone assist you. If you have no one can assist you, make sure to use your wheelchair slowly and carefully to prevent any slips and slides.

 

  1. Stay away or go around the any potholes you see. Holes in flat surfaces or ramps can make the wheelchair lose balance or tip over.

 

  1.  Go cautiously up and down the ramps. Make sure there are no uneven slippery surfaces or objects obstructing your path. If necessary, ask for help. When you are pushing a wheelchair up a ramp, make sure to check if there are no obstacles. Slowly move up the ramp so you don’t tip the wheelchair over. If you are moving a wheelchair while sitting on the chair that is up on a ramp, lean forward for momentum after engaging the anti-tippers. Before doing so, make sure you have anti-tippers installed.

 

  1. Navigate off road surfaces carefully when riding over grass, dirt, and gravel. If necessary, ask someone to push your wheelchair.

 

  1. Attach lights for night time use to be visible. You can attach flashing lights, reflectors, or flags.

 

  1. Maintain your wheelchair on a weekly basis. Make sure all components are in good condition.

 

  1.  Don’t hang heavy bags on the back of your wheelchair. It may cause the chair to tip over when you are getting in or out of the chair.

 

  1.  Follow traffic safety signs. Do not ride your wheelchair on the road.

 

  1.  If you are using an electric chair, make sure it is fully charge.

 

  1.  Lock brakes when entering or exiting the chair.

 

  1.  Find your center of gravity to prevent accidents. Move around in the chair to get a feel for where you have the most balance.

 

  1.  Avoid bending forward or backward from tipping over. Do not lean far forward or backward when trying to obtain an object that is out of reach. Roll your chair as close to the object when reaching  object.

 

15.  Steer clear of tipping the chair by avoiding going fast. Lock the brakes when entering or existing the chair. Avoid hitting large bumps with one wheel. Maintain slow speed when encountering rough surfaces and tight corners.

via wikihow.com

 

Emma Louie