5 Tips for Staying Safe in Your Wheelchair This Winter

If this is your first winter in a wheelchair, here are a few steps that will help you stay safe while in your wheelchair.

#1 Put on Snow Tires

Just like with a car, there are multiple types of wheels that you can equip your wheelchair with. In the wintertime, you should switch to snow tires for your wheelchair. Snow tires are large and are made of a softer rubber than regular wheelchair tires. The soft rubber rubber on your wheelchair snow tires will allow your wheelchair to grip icy and snowy surfaces better and will help ensure that your wheelchair doesn't slide on the ground when you are outside.

#2 Take Your Wheelchair in for a Check-Up

Just like a vehicle, sometimes your electric powered wheelchair will need a little maintenance. Make sure that your wheelchair is ready for winter by taking it to a wheelchair repair service or medical supply store and having them fix up your wheelchair. They can clean your wheelchair, make sure all the parts are working correctly, and properly lubricate your wheelchair for winter time.

#3 Pack an Emergency Kit

You should have an emergency kit packed up and in your wheelchair with you at all times. This winter emergency kit should include food, water, blankets, a flashlight, and flares. These items will help you stay safe if you get stuck, and the flare will help you attract the attention of someone to assist you.

#4 Always Go Out With a Fully Battery

When you leave your house, make sure that you leave the house with a full battery. When your battery is outside and exposed to really cold, freezing temperature, the charge will drain more quickly than when you use the battery inside or outside during the summer. To ensure that your battery doesn't die while you are using it, make sure it is at a 100% charge if possible before going outside. When you do go out into the winter, bring a portable charger for your wheelchair so you can charge it when possible to keep the charge up.

#5 Bundle Up

Finally, it is really important that you stay warm. You don't want to get frostbite when you are outside because you are cold. Dress up in layers when you get ready to go outside so you can control your body temperature. Bring along a fleece or wool blanket to put over your legs to keep them warm. Bring along hand warmers for your feet and hands. Keep an extra hat, gloves, socks and scarf with you so you have backup in case you get cold or they get wet.

Follow the five steps above to stay safe in your wheelchair when you are out and about in the cold.