If you regularly use accessible parking spaces, you may have noticed that they are not always as accessible as they need to be.
A common complaint we hear from people with Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles is that the spaces are simply not large enough to allow the safe and easy use of the ramp – whether it’s a side or rear entry vehicle.
As technology improves, our cars are getting larger and can accommodate more complex disability conversions. While this is great news for people with disabilities and their families, it presents an issue when it comes to parking as accessible parking spaces have not necessarily kept up with the technological changes, which poses a significant risk for people safely getting in and out of their cars.
Those with Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles are finding that accessible parking spaces are often too short to accommodate rear ramp access, with many finding themselves entering and leaving the vehicle on road space, posing the risk of obstructing or being injured by oncoming traffic. Those who have side entry vehicles are also finding that although the spaces are wide enough for the door to open, they are not necessarily large enough for a ramp to extend out or for assistive technology (e.g. wheelchairs) to park next to the car for the passenger or driver to transfer in and out of the car.
We have heard about these issues through discussions on our Facebook page and directly from people who have Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles.
To help raise awareness of the issue, together with Ben Waechter of KYD-X, we at Blue Badge would like to find out about your experiences with the size of accessible parking spaces through our anonymous survey.
It should only take 5 minutes of your time and will hopefully help us get the information and support we need to petition the authorities to change the size requirements for accessible parking across Australia.