There is nothing like the RV lifestyle. You are able to enjoy the open road, and come and go when you get ready to. You do not have to give up this lifestyle if you happen to incur an illness or injury that causes you to have a disability. If you are upgrading the RV you currently have, or investing in a new one, there are numerous ways you can make your RV mobility accessible. With a few changes, you can still enjoy your dream lifestyle in your RV.
Do You Need Help Getting In Or Out Of Your Vehicle?
No matter what your level of disability is, there is a wide range of modifications that will allow you to get in and out of your RV. These range from a simple entry assist handle that will help you step in and out, to a full electrical lift that will allow you, or your companion, to enter without ever having to get out of your wheelchair.
If your knees will no longer allow you to climb up and down the steps, you can modify your doorway with a step assist that will lift you in a standing position to the top step where you will be able to step right in. If you are not comfortable standing, or you use a mobile scooter that will be stored elsewhere on your RV, you may want to consider a chair lift. This will assist in transferring you from your wheelchair or scooter, to the inside of your RV. Even the doorway itself can be modified or widened to give you better access to your vehicle.
Do You Need Help Driving Your Vehicle?
If your disability has left you unable to mash the gas or break, this does not mean that you can no longer drive. Most RVs can be ordered or outfitted with hand controls. While these have been around for many years, upgrades in technology have made them even easier to use.
Some of the newer steering modifications on the market have even completely done away with the steering wheel. These modifications will allow you to completely operate your vehicle with the use of a joystick, and a touchpad can give you the ability to operate other auxiliary controls.
Most hand controls are designed to offer the following:
- Less shoulder and elbow strain and pain
- Greater upper body stability
- Precise fingertip control
- An open cockpit free of clutter for better access and more
There are many different brands and designs. You may want to consult an occupational therapist, or other disability professional, to make recommendations on the best design to address your specific needs. It does not matter if you have lost a limb, no longer have a full range of feeling in your limbs, or enough strength for traditional controls, hand controls can help you overcome these obstacles and get back to being in full control of your RV.
Do You Need Help Inside Of Your Vehicle?
As you may already know, RVs can be custom ordered and designed exactly as you desire. What you may not realize is that any level of customization is available at any point during your ownership. This allows your entire interior to be customized to meet your needs.
Some RV owners with disabilities have found that some of the following modifications have given them greater freedom. These include the following:
- Widen interior paths and more open floor plans
- Lower kitchen counters, cabinets, and appliances
- Roll-in showers
- Roll-under sinks and more
Where Do You Start?
If you are shopping for a new or used RV, ask your dealer about RV that have been specifically designed for people with disabilities. Many of your major manufacturers have already addressed this need and offer different models that may be suitable for you.
If you are purchasing a used vehicle, or already have an RV that needs to be modified to meet your needs, the RV dealer may still be able to help you design or make, the customizations you need to make your RV work for you. If not, they are often able to refer you to a local business that can provide these services. For more information, contact a business such as Orangewood RV Center.