Driving with a disability can seem like an uphill task at times. However, you can turn it into a walk in the park as long as you make the necessary adjustments in your life. Ideally, you need to modify your car to fit your situation completely. If you are physically handicapped, you will need to add grips on your vehicle to make getting in easy.
For those who are hard-of-hearing, wearing a hearing aid is essential to ensure that you are fully concentrated on the road. It will also be essential to make the necessary adjustments to your driving license to be compliant with the law. While these are the initial changes you need to make, you should also be careful with the driving habit you develop as a person with a disability. With a great habit, not only can you reduce the chances of being involved in an accident, but you can also make driving around in your car blissful enough.
Here is how to make your driving experience a little bit smoother:
Receive Specialized Training
While the concept taught during the training lessons for drivers with a disability isn’t different from the rest, some few adjustments have to be made to make the sessions effective enough for you. For starters, you can begin with an intensive driving course so you can learn how to drive quickly and safely. If you had been driving before the disability happened, do take a refresher course. The minor tweaks that will be made to the driving course can be quite helpful in ensuring that you are ready to get back on the road.
You should look for a driving school that caters for your specific disability. For instance, having ramps that lead up to classes will make it easy to move around with a wheelchair. Also, ensure that they have trainers who specialize with your specific disability. Be sure to ask questions about your new driving situation and whether you will need to inform the DVLA or not.
Minimize Driving Distractions
94% of car crashes are tied to some form of human error, according to NPR. It might only take a second of distraction from the road to get involved in an accident. You can be texting while driving and end up changing your story entirely. Keep distractions away when driving.
Consider placing your phone in your glove compartment to resist the urge to answer calls or text back. If you must, use applications that make it easy to text and receive call hands-free. Set the GPS before starting your journey, and ensure that you are receiving directions through the spoken instructions feature to avoid having to look at the screen. Anything that will shift your focus from the road should be avoided, including arguing with passengers or listening to music.
Plan Your Route Early enough
Imagine having to get out of your car to ask for directions from strangers. Even worse, starting your commute only to learn that part of the road you are on is under construction. The more prepared you are for your ride, the less you will be distracted, not to mention that you will have a smooth driving experience.
Plan everything from your route, the directions, and even the speed limit. In some cases, learning about the parking situation of your destination can also help in planning how you will get from your car and back.
Avoid Unsafe Conditions
Some road and weather conditions might make driving uncomfortable for you. If a condition takes you out of your comfort zone, avoid it. For instance, keep away from driving in places with poor roads, and use a taxi during inclement weather, unless you are confident enough with your driving skills. Of course, you can break out of your cocoon with time, but don’t rush into driving in risky situations.
Safety should be a priority, regardless of whether you are driving while disabled or not. You should also focus on making your driving experience comfortable and convenient too. Consider the tips above to stay safe on the road.