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Pedestrian Safety For Mobile Wheelchair Users

Pedestrian Safety For Mobile Wheelchair Users
Christian J. Amendt

Mobile wheelchair users face a higher risk of injury during pedestrian travel. Unlike other pedestrians, they are often less able to react to dangerous situations because they lack mobility.

People who know how to travel safely in their mobile wheelchair can minimize their risks and feel more confident traveling near traffic.

Wheelchair risks

According to, 3 million Americans rely on a wheelchair to give them some mobility. Wheelchair use has many benefits which may include increased independence and a better quality of life. However, wheelchairs have their share of risks too, especially when users travel around other, larger vehicles. Some of these risks include the following:

  • Uneven surfaces
  • Slippery surfaces
  • Tipping and falling
  • Reduced agility

Another common risk is that people in larger vehicles may not notice a person in a wheelchair crossing in front of them, for example. Being less visible can increase the risks of a potentially fatal collision.

Wheelchair safety

Wheelchair users can increase their safety when they implement certain behaviors if they anticipate public travel. reminds people to find an adequate chair that provides comfort and is uniquely fitted to their personal needs and requirements. They can practice maneuvering their chair in a safe place in preparation for going out in public.

Just like any other pedestrian, mobile wheelchair users should abide by all traffic laws. They may consider using a flag or something bright to affix to their wheelchair to increase their visibility to other drivers. When crossing a street, people should make direct eye contact with drivers and wait until everyone is completely stopped before they proceed to cross. As an added safety measure, some people may consider wearing a helmet when traveling in busy areas.

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