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  • #74249
    DrivAbility – Driving Assessment

    Hi Guys,

    I wanted to make this post and keep it updated as I am in the process of having a Driving Assessment through DrivAbility.
    Here’s a history on my adventure with cars and how I have wound up having this assessment:

    I passed my driving test in 2004, just a month before I turned 18, in a manual transmission car. This was during the very early onset of my MD so I still had enough strength to drive “normally”. I drove my dad’s car around for a few months before buying my 1st car.

    2004 Citroen C2 VTR. The car was around 18 months old and had a semi-automatic gearbox. No clutch – Result! I could drive it like a full on Auto, or use paddle shifts behind the steering wheel to shift gear without the clutch.

    It started life like this in 2005:
    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/05-11-055.jpg

    And by the time I sold it in 2008 it looked like:
    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/Shoot%20108/24Feb08006.jpg

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/Shoot%20208/DSCF0062.jpg

    Did I mention I was a boy racer!? :lol: I spent 3 years modding the car and going to shows and having magazine shoots and so on. Spent an absolute fortune but loved every minute of it! It was what kept me healthy and active during that time.

    So by 2008 it was becoming difficult to drive as there wasn’t much space between the drivers seat and the pedals. I found myself lifting my right foot on to the brake which isn’t very safe. On the C2 there was about 17″ between the edge of the seat and the brake pedal (see above pic).
    So I needed something with more space on this area. I ended up getting a 2006 BMW 523i M-Sport (Automatic)

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/E60%20109/DSCF0066.jpg

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/E60/IMAG0567.jpg

    The space in the drivers footwell was amazing. I could shift my right foot between the accelerator and brake pedal with so much ease and instantaneously so it was very safe. There was 21″ between the edge of the seat and the brake pedal (see poor quality pic above)

    Loved the car to bits…but it was very very low. by 2011 I was struggling to get out of the car and I stopped going places because it would take so much energy just to get out.
    In Feb 2011 I replaced with a 2007 Audi Q7 3.0 S-Line. It was the ONLY 4×4 that had a low swung driving position to give the right distance between the seat and pedal. As with the BMW, this was 21″ (see below pic).

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/Q7/IMAG0656.jpg

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/Q7/P1020208.jpg

    Everything was going really really well….until 2 weeks ago :| On Friday 27th Jan, I was heading up to IKEA with my mum & dad and I hit a transit van at 50mph.

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/Q7/IMG-20120127-00039.jpg

    http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c138/sagvtr/Q7/IMG-20120127-00037-1.jpg

    The motorway was closed for 4hrs. Me & dad were ok but my mum spent 4 days in hospital with internal bruising. She is ok now and back home.
    The car in front of me braked very suddenly and although I braked very hard too I was going to hit him, so I swerved and ended up hitting a van instead. I then bounced off the van and hit another car.
    I found out this week the insurance company have written off my car so I wont be getting it back :cry:

    *****In between the above and the below my insurance company asked a million and one questions about my MD and whether it contributed to the accident and whether I had informed the DVLA*****

    SO…..I now need another car. BUT….this time I want to be assessed so I can be sure that when I am behind the wheel, I am safe, and more importantly, those around me and other road users are safe.

    Sagar
    Participant
    Posts: 82
    Joined: 20/12/2010
    #84488
    Re: DrivAbility – Driving Assessment

    So, earlier this week I rang Derby DrivAbility.

    The lady on the phone seemed very knowledgeable and asked me why I had rang and what I was hoping to gain from an assessment, so I explained.

    She told me that for a self referral the assessment fee was £95. This would be waived if I have a Motability vehicle, which I don’t unfortunately.

    Today, I received the 2 page application form. It asks all the basics and some additional data such as weights & dimensions for wheelchair users, current vehicle, walking/mobility aids etc.

    So tomorrow, I will send off the form with a cheque and wait for them to contact me with a booking.
    The assessment takes place at Kingsway Hospital in Derby.

    Here’s a link to their leaflet: http://www.getgoingnow.org/wp-content/uploads/downloads/2011/07/DD-leaflet1.pdf

    I will keep this thread updated as I go through the assessment process!

    Sag :)

    Sagar
    Participant
    Posts: 82
    Joined: 20/12/2010
    #84489
    Re: DrivAbility – Driving Assessment

    Awesome … hope the assessment works for you. £95 seems a little high, but if they do a very thorough job, it should be worth the funds.

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #84490
    Re: DrivAbility – Driving Assessment

    A driving assessment sounds like a really good idea, there’s a list of mobility centres on this website http://www.mobility-centres.org.uk/ unfortunately there don’t seem to be very many, but it says they’re recognised by the dvla

    I wish I’d known about these a few years ago when the dvla made me take a standard driving test to measure my fitness to drive! As I don’t have a definite diagnoses, my licence gets reviewed every three years, even though my gp and consultant say I’m fine to drive, and my condition has hardly changed since I took my original test nearly 20 years ago (although the test had :o ). I would have gladly travelled further to visit one of these centres.

    redpanda
    Participant
    Posts: 45
    Joined: 26/09/2010
    #84491
    Re: DrivAbility – Driving Assessment

    Hi guys, just a quick update.

    I had a phone call on Friday 17th from Derby DrivAbility telling me that they a cancellation and could get me in on Monday (tomorrow!)

    I was emailed the appointment letter and it details:

    – Directions to the Kingsway Hospital in Derby
    – Disabled Parking details for the site
    – Documents I need to bring (Drivers license, list of medication & any correspondence from the DVLA)
    – A run down of the day which can last up to 3 hours
    – Details on bringing carers/family/friends and taking breaks etc…

    My appointment is tommorow so I will write back with more details of how it went :)

    Sag

    Sagar
    Participant
    Posts: 82
    Joined: 20/12/2010
    #84492
    Re: DrivAbility – Driving Assessment

    Great stuff, hope all goes well today. We look forward to hearing about it!

    A learning experience is one of those things that say, “You know that thing you just did? Don’t do that.” - Douglas Adams

    sar78 sar78
    Moderator
    Posts: 2,246
    Joined: 05/03/2015
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