Vehicle adaptation for disabled drivers

Common concerns

You might be worried that being disabled will stop you from buying a car, or that the costs of getting a car adapted to suit your needs will be too expensive. However, this might not be the case.

With technology always moving forwards, it could well be possible that there are adaptations that will allow you to drive. There are also grants available to cover some of the costs of these adaptations.

Adapting vehicles

Most cars and other vehicles too, can be adapted to suit a wide range of disabled drivers. When you are thinking of buying a car, you need to know how it needs to be adapted to suit you. This could be anything from hand controls for the accelerator and brakes to a high-tech joystick type control.

You will also need to do some research into whether the company, who will adapt your car for you, can adapt the make and model that you are thinking of buying. This should be as simple as making a phone call to the adaptation firm, and they will be able to give you all the help and advice you need.

Costs & help

Getting a car adapted will cost extra money, but don’t let this put you off. You might be able to get some financial help towards the costs of adapting your vehicle. It’s really important to check this out before ordering a car or booking any changes – you don’t want to spend good money on a really nice new car, only to find out that it can’t take the adaptations you want.

Also you need to know how much financial support you will be able to get so that you don’t go over budget.

Motability

The Motability scheme was set up to help disabled people realise their dreams of becoming drivers. It is important to contact them on 0845 456 4566 if you are thinking of buying a car, to find out how they can help you.

Who can help?

It is important to contact The Motability scheme if you are thinking of buying a car. You can contact them by calling 0845 456 4566 or by visiting their website at www.motability.co.uk/HomePage.asp?nodeid=89618.

The Direct Gov website has lots of useful information about driving, buying a car and passing your test. Visit their site at www.direct.gov.uk/DisabledPeople/MotoringAndTransport/fs/en.

You can also visit the Disabled Living Foundation at http://www.dlf.org.uk for free, impartial advice about all types of disability equipment and mobility products for disabled people.

Living Made Easy is run by the Disabled Living Foundation (DLF), a national charity that offers advice, information and training on independent living for people with disabilities, as well as carers.