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Mobility hits the beach: All-terrain tracked wheelchairs soon available for free use at 2 Oregon Coast spots

Oregon Parks Forever

MEDFORD, Ore. (KTVZ) – Providing a new way to get out into nature for people with mobility challenges, David’s Chair Outdoor Mobility Systems and Oregon Parks Forever are collaborating to bring the Oregon Coast the first locations where mobility-challenged visitors can pick up and use an electric all-terrain wheelchair.

Starting in early May, chairs will be located at the Manzanita Visitor’s Center (31 Laneda Ave, Manzanita, OR 97130) and at the Seaside Elks (324 Avenue A, Seaside, OR 97138) and can be reserved through davidschair.org.

These chairs will provide a new freedom for a mobility challenged park visitor - to get off the pavement and out into nature.

With increased accessibility to the beach, mobility-impaired visitors will be able to participate in activities never-before possible.

By being able to get on the beach, all the way down to water’s edge, these all-terrain chairs will invite many new people to share the wonders of fresh air, sunshine and sea breezes with family and friends instead of being limited to paved walkways and parking lots.

Anyone with mobility impairment, requiring the assistance of wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes or crutches, will be able to use these chairs.

See these chairs in action:

Over the next couple of years, the partners are working to locate hosts at American Legion, VFW, Elks and Tourism related entities along the Oregon Coast and the I-5 corridor where a chair and trailer can be stored and made available for free use by visitors with mobility challenges.  Our goal is to find locations for a total of 10 chairs.

We are doing this to provide easier access to these chairs to a wider number of people.  Under the current operating model for David’s Chair, anyone wishing to borrow one of their seven current chairs (for free) must bring a trailer hitch-enabled vehicle to Medford or Tigard and pick up a chair and trailer to take where they would like to use it.  This severely limits access to other parts of the state.  One of the most popular uses for these chairs is to get out on the beach, hence our desire for host locations along the Oregon Coast. 

Reservations for free use can be made at: www.davidschair.org

Article Topic Follows: Oregon-Northwest

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