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As drivers and environmentalists alike complain, SUVs, vans and trucks are getting too darn large. You feel at times as though you're contributing to the trend. You may have a specially designed wheelchair van if you are a single or double amputee. Specially designed vans or trucks were never meant to be compact cars.
So in addition to the grumbles and looks you get when you try to park what feels like the Queen Mary, you worry about getting out of your van easily. The specialty van was invented for a reason, and so was the portable wheelchair ramp, or as it's often called, the suitcase wheelchair ramp. Don't be fooled: Suitcase portable wheel chair ramps are compact, but they're also capable of supporting you like the gangplank of the Queen Mary.
For example, the E-Z Access Telescoping Platform Suitcase Ramp can extend between 4-8 feet and hold a weight capacity of 850 pounds. It can accommodate heavyweight scooters and wheelchairs. You can blithely pack up the ramp when you're finished--at least one thing about your van is compact! Anyone who stares is just a landlubber.
There are many excellent portable wheelchair ramps for use with vans, and on that road trip to see the Queen Mary, it's helpful to have a suitcase wheelchair ramp that fits into your suitcase (which you won't lose unless you happen to drive withing shouting distance of an airport.) Just make sure the ramp is non-skid, telescoping, and the proper width--30 inches is a good average length.
Don't be surprised if people shout, "Ahoy, sailor, permission to come aboard!" You might have a little trouble from Captain Ahabs if your van is white, but have no fear, Greenpeace may stop griping about your gas and rush to the rescue.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|