Friday, August 13, 2010

week in the life of a wheelchair accessible van

Facing a week without our wheelchair accessible van cast a shadow on our August calendar.

Our van needed to spend a week at the vehicle spa getting rejuvenated after the collision. Costs of repairs and a rental vehicle - responsibility of USAA insurance, their client had rear-ended us.
                                            
Finding a ‘comparable’ rental vehicle was frankly more of a challenge than a point of contention. On site Enterprise Rent-a-Car office was worthless. Kudos to McCafferty's Collision Center! Their staff not only grasped living with wheelchair accessibility but found the needle in the haystack.
                                                        
Ta-da! Accesible Rental Vans of Owings Mill, MD to the rescue, with pickup and delivery service to Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Delaware.

Rendezvousing with me at the collision center, the rental Dodge Caravan/Braun Entervan was configured ideally for our needs, an able bodied driver and wheelchair passenger. … Well almost – later discovering the air conditioning did not function at the highest setting was a problem for living with Multiple Sclerosis heat sensitive symptoms especially in August.

One phone call, no hassles ARC met me the next morning with another van. Inventory and commitment to customer satisfaction was exemplary. Keep in mind their base of operations is 80 miles away.

Second Dodge Caravan/Braun Entervan’s air conditioning worked perfectly! Intriguing to me, it was equipped with both regular and hand controls. I have never had the opportunity to ever see much less use accessibility driving controls. It has been a new window onto assistive technology.

… and gave us a good midsummer’s laugh over imagining Patti behind the wheel. Run for your lives, legally blind driver locked and loaded!


The more severe the progression of Multiple Sclerosis the more isolating it can be. Wheelchair accessible vehicles are more than empowering they represent freedom.

Freedom of mobility is too often not treated like a necessary activity of daily living. We have been blessed this week to have encountered so many good people working in businesses who actually ‘get it’ and have gone the extra mile to make it work.

Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer 
musings: patrick ponder

2 comments:

  1. I think that was neat, Patrick, that they have such a rental service and doubly neat that they actually provided quality customer service!! glad you guys still had the opportunity to do your outings :)

    betty

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  2. I’m glad you were blessed with people who help and provide you with what you need. Indeed, today’s technology is amazing. With the invention of wheelchair accessible vehicle, our family and friends who have similar condition can experience freedom, and it makes their life easier. I hope your car will be restored the way it was before the collision! Have a great day!

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