Raising awareness for disability rights and the groups within the physically handicapped community is an important part of what we do at Van Products in addition to providing wheelchair accessible vans to help keep life moving. We’ve put together some data about the disability population that we find interesting and think provides a great reminder of the wide reach and impact of physical disability throughout the nation.
In 2008, over 12% of the United States population aged 21-64 were disabled. The number of people with physical disabilities is increasing, with an estimated 39,395,000 people in the U.S in need of handicapped accessible transportation. This number has increased by 3.4 million between 1999 and 2005. Increase in disability cases is one reason why the wheelchair accessible vans and mobility solutions offered by Van Products continue to be relevant and sought-after, while we constantly work to improve our products and offer the most convenient and flexible service in the business.
With increased ease of access to events around the country, the use of a handicap accessible van can open up a new world of excitement, allowing you or those you care for to hurdle barriers previously thought to be inaccessible. An example of this we find particularly inspirational is Tricia Downing, a woman living in Colorado who, as a paraplegic, is training for a special Ironman title. 20 years ago, Tricia was training on her bike when she was struck by a car, paralyzing her from the chest down. After only 4 months of rehab, Tricia was able to continue playing sports, and now trains more than 20 hours a week to compete in the Ironman. She has an incredible spirit, relentless determination, and mental strength.
With a wheelchair accessible van, it would be easy to travel and see another disabled hero at the MCAS Miramar Air Show. This event features Shockley’s Jet Truck, an Oracle bi-plane doing nosedives and aerial loops, and, perhaps most inspiring, the hang glider performance by paraplegic pilot Dan Buchanan. After his exhibition of skill and dexterity, Mr. Buchanan leaves the runway in his wheelchair.
Throughout America there are fantastic events, festivals, fundraisers, and sporting competitions that wouldn’t be possible without disabled athletes, performers, and people. A handicapped accessible van is an easy and comfortable way to enable travel and to share in their excitement. At Van Products, we want to help you in any way we can, so get in touch to learn about your mobility options!