The Braze Mobility Blog

News and information about mobility and blind spot sensors. Subscribe to our RSS and never miss a story.

Braze Mobility with the three symbols depicting a pylon, accessibility, and not crashing

The Prevalence of Wheelchair Collisions

05/28/2018

Recently, I took a power wheelchair for a test drive through downtown Toronto, Ontario. Within a two hour period, I had hit at least 2 doorways, and narrowly missed the ankles of more than one person with my footrests (thankfully being Canadian they jumped out of the way of my rampaging chair with a cheerful “sorry”). This experience made it very clear the challenges associated with driving a power wheelchair- especially in a tight space. The following blog series will focus on the danger associated with operating power mobility devices, and how we can reduce that danger and improve access to power wheelchairs. It is important to understand the risks associated with power wheelchair use in order to find ways to minimise risks while maximising the independence of users. It is, however, difficult to measure the prevalence of collisions incurred by power wheelchair users. Statistics are difficult to obtain, as there is no central reporting centre for power wheelchair accidents. There are some research studies that have been done to evaluate the incidence of collisions for power wheelchair users. Many of these studies are focused on the use of power mobility devices in an institutional setting. Here is a brief...

Read More
Image with the words Pros & Cons and three symbols and words depicting Rear View Cameras, Mirrors and Sensor Systems

Visual Aids for People Who Use Wheelchairs

05/21/2018

Most people who operate any sort of motorised vehicle have aids to help them see what is going on around them. Mirrors, cameras and sensors are commonly used to help people when driving cars. So, what about people who drive wheelchairs? There are various visual aids for wheelchair users, which provide information about what is going on in blind spots. This blog will discuss the pros and cons of these solutions. Backup cameras for wheelchair users: Backup cameras are a popular way for wheelchair users to get information about what is behind them. Cameras designed for attachment to trailer hitches and license plates can be adapted for wheelchair users and attached to the back of a chair. These devices typically relay video information to the driver on a smartphone or tablet. This requires the wheelchair user to mount their phone/ tablet in an easily visible location. Pros: Cameras are useful when driving outside or in large spaces, especially when operating a wheelchair safely on roads or in busy traffic areas.They are good at allowing the user to track objects such as cars or pedestrians moving through their field of view.These systems are fairly low cost, and take advantage of technology the user already owns...

Read More
Braze Mobility with the two puzzle pieces with the words Challenges in the left puzzle piece and Solutions in the right puzzle piece

Challenges and Solutions in Wheelchair Training and Assessment

05/10/2018

The Smart Wheelchairs in Assessment and Training (SWAT) State of the Field workshop was an initiative to gather various stakeholders in power wheelchair training and assessment and create a comprehensive review of the current state of the discipline. The participants involved a balance of both clinical and technical experts on wheelchair training and assessment and the outcomes of the workshop are published in an AGEWELL report. The 3-part Braze Mobility SWAT Blog Series will discuss some key outcomes of this workshop. According to the SWAT report, the main challenges faced by practitioners in wheelchair training and assessment and those being assessed and trained for wheelchair use are: High cost of equipment and funding constraintsLack of available resources to train and supervise users safelyLimitations in commercially available technology to accommodate client needs What solutions have been proposed to combat these challenges? Lack of available resources to train and supervise users on safe use In order to gain the maximum impact from the limited resources available, therapists can use technologies such as Smart Wheelchairs. Smart Wheelchairs have many different benefits that will help to increase the efficiency of training and assessment sessions. The first is that these devices can monitor users at...

Read More