Hans Joachim is mobile again. Actually, he always has been, but sometimes things don't always work quite the way you imagine. In his Peugeot Traveller, he used to operate the accelerator and brake with Space Drive using the accelerator-brake slider. But due to the vibrations, he also gave slight impulses to the input device when he didn't actually want to operate it. A case for the mobility tinkerers at PARAVAN:
Now Hans Joachim has a so-called "light brake". Here, the accelerator-brake slider installed directly in the cockpit receives mechanical signals from a classic handheld device, which are then transmitted to the Space Drive System. Now he has 100 per cent control of his car again.
Due to an industrial accident in a mine, the 61-year-old has been dependent on a wheelchair for more than 30 years after a complex cervical vertebrae injury. Until a few years ago, he was still able to move and was last on the road in an Audi A4 with a handheld device. But after that was no longer possible, he had to switch to a Peugeot Traveller. The change from a sleek passenger car to a minibus was difficult for him, so he at least gave his car an extravagant look - with shimmering multi-coloured foiling and matching rims and a proper music system. "Then the bus at least has to be an eye-catcher," he reports. When he took delivery of his new car just over a year ago, it was equipped with a gas-brake slider in addition to the cassette lift, which helps him drive his wheelchair directly in front of the steering wheel. But the change from the hand-held device, which could no longer be operated with strength, to the gas-brake pusher with a trident turned out to be difficult. "The system was too sensitive for Hans Joachim," says mobility consultant Joachim Glück. "The solution was between the two systems. On the one hand, he needed the robustness of the mechanical handheld, but on the other hand, he needed the smoothness of the Space Drive system for accelerator and brake to manoeuvre his car safely in traffic."
"Light Brake" is the name of the solution that the PARAVAN technicians have developed for such purposes. Individually adapted to the customer's physical conditions, a manual accelerator-brake slider is installed in combination with the accelerator-brake slider and Space Drive. This means that the device is no longer so sensitive. "It always happens that the complaint pattern changes," reports Joachim Glück, "but it is important for customers to know that this does not mean the end, but that there are ways to adapt the systems to the new conditions, be it with a system change or with a modification of the existing equipment. The success proves Hans Joachim right. Even the first test drives with driving instructor Ralf Buhmann showed that the "light brake" is the ideal solution for him. "He passed the emergency brake test with flying colours," Buhmann reports. Now he feels safe behind the wheel again. On the drive from the Swabian Alb to his home in Saarland, he then sat directly behind the wheel himself for the good 250 kilometres. Now he can go to physiotherapy on his own again and as soon as it is possible again, he is looking forward to finally going on tour on his own again.