Using your Powered Wheelchair After Lockdown
10 May 2021
The end of lockdown is in sight, and as we all breathe a collective sigh of relief, many of us look forward to getting back to some form of normality. For those of us who use a Powered Wheelchair, the essential only travel restrictions may mean you’ve used your vehicle very little, if at all over the past few months. Many people have been making use of things like home delivery services in order to stay safe during the pandemic but now that we are able to travel again, it’s the perfect time to ensure your powered wheelchair is serviced and ready to go throughout the summer months.
Preparing your Powered Wheelchair
Much like a car, not using your powered wheelchair can have a negative effect on the vehicle when you come to reuse it so it’s essential to make sure your vehicle is safe and comfortable before venturing out.
Keep it clean
You won’t need to carry out an extensive cleaning routine for your powered wheelchair, but we would recommend giving it a wipe down with a dry cloth. This ensures your wheelchair is clean of any dust and debris. Use gentle anti-bacterial wipes to clean the seat and handles once a week. Do not use any oily cleaners which can make your powered wheelchair slippery and dangerous.
Wear and tear
Check over your scooter regularly to look for any signs of wear and tear. Storing your powered wheelchair or scooter in a locked garage or shed protects it from any adverse weather conditions. Additionally, invest in a waterproof cover that keeps your vehicle safe and away from the eyes of thieves.
Keep your manual and any additional information about your powered wheelchair handy so you can double-check essentials such as tyre pressure. Tips for maintaining your powered wheelchair’s tyres include:
- Avoid rough or uneven surfaces which could cause unnecessary damage to your tyres
- Always check your tyres for splits or punctures before you travel
- Regularly grease the axel of your wheels to prolong their life
Remaining visible on the road is absolutely essential, and a good pair of lights means you can be clearly seen by others around you. Always check your lights before heading off on your journey. It’s also worth investing in a fluorescent jacket which means you can be seen from afar. Even in the summer months when the sun is shining, it’s important to be clearly visible to both cars and pedestrians to avoid accidents.
Confidence on the road
Lockdown and the absence of socialising has left many of us with diminished confidence. Isolation can take a toll on our mental health, making usual everyday tasks feel daunting. If you haven’t been using your powered wheelchair during the lockdown or the roads are starting to become busier, you may be feeling anxious about venturing out. If you are feeling unsure, don’t worry. This is a perfectly natural reaction to the lockdown, and after a few journeys, your confidence to travel in your powered wheelchair will return.
Whilst insurance for powered wheelchairs and mobility scooters is not a legal requirement, it’s highly recommended by the government. Having insurance can help give you the confidence to begin exploring again, knowing that you’re protected should anything go wrong. At Blue Badge, we are a friendly, UK based team that is passionate about supporting our clients to ensure they have the confidence to live their lives to the fullest. Our powered wheelchair insurance cover includes Up to £2 Million Public Liability Insurance, Theft, Damage or Loss of your Electric Wheelchair, 90 Days Holiday Cover, Loss or theft of personal effects and no fees for policy changes. We ensure that you are supported throughout the process and are able to get back on the road as soon as possible.
Tips for getting back on the road
- It’s always worth brushing up on the rules of the road when using your wheelchair so you can feel safe and informed
- On your first outing, choose a short journey at a quiet time so you can get your bearings
- Don’t be afraid to ask a friend to walk with you, so you can have someone to chat to and make you feel at ease
- Before your journey, ensure you’ve checked over your powered wheelchair as above so you know your journey will be safe and comfortable
- Take a phone with you so you can contact a friend or relative in an emergency
A powered wheelchair is an invaluable tool that gives you the ease to travel anywhere. From social occasions through to everyday tasks like shopping, a powered wheelchair means you can carry out tasks safely and comfortably, so you can have an independent life. If you are getting ready to use your powered wheelchair out of lockdown, the Blue Badge team are here to support you with comprehensive insurance. For further information give the team a call today or explore our wheelchair insurance policy.