Created by and for people with physical disabilities.

Traveling as a Disabled Person.

Jul 21, 1999

This is an archival transcript of one of our past meetings. We don't have scheduled topical meetings anymore, but we're not opposed to the idea of bringing them back if someone is willing to commit to hosting them on a "long term" basis.

Participants already present:
WonderW: I wasn't in channel more than 10 mins today
WonderW: hi Denise
MsAmazin: hi :)
Lonewolf: Ok meeting time
Mooooooo: okay :o)
Lonewolf: Tonight we are going rto discuass traveling with disabilities
Lonewolf: This is a hard one for me because I don't travel
Lonewolf: So everyone polease jump in
Lonewolf: 1. What modes of transportation have you used?
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MsAmazin: Amtrak, greyhound, my car, plane, boat
WonderW: paratransit
Mooooooo: plane, bus, and automobile
suzze: amtrak, plane, car
Lonewolf: oh good-we have a lot of topics
Kark: plane and car
Lonewolf: amtrack?
suzze: train
Kark: train
Lonewolf: oh
MsAmazin: amtrak train and bus
Lonewolf: could you all tell about your experiences?
anny1: car plane and train
suzze: some good, some bad
WonderW: I like planes
Lonewolf: what special accomodations did you require?
MsAmazin: Amtrak was good....met most of our needs
Lonewolf: what about wheelchairs though
WonderW: aisle seats
MsAmazin: buses with lifts were available
suzze: had major problem getting wheelchair at arrival gate
suzze: horrible experience
Lonewolf: I'm sorry WW what is an aisle seat?
MsAmazin: but about 1/2 were inoperable
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WonderW: gel cell batteries are usually ok
anny1: i dislike those little puddle jumper planes, the big jets are fine
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WonderW: which is what I now have
Lonewolf: that's a lot of help Ms
MsAmazin: heh...we complained
WonderW: yeah, big much better
Lonewolf: has it improved?
MsAmazin: yes! tremendously
Lonewolf: great
MsAmazin: train service was excellent
Lonewolf: suzze what happened to you?
WonderW: oh, aisle seats are seats at end of aisle
Lonewolf: oh
MsAmazin: conductor made sure all of our needs were met, I could use my oxygen concentrator on the train
Lonewolf: jeez I'm dumb
WonderW: np, dear
Lonewolf: can u use it on a plane?
suzze: had ordered w/c upon arrival, it never arrived
MsAmazin: I can on United
WonderW: oh no
Lonewolf: oh my suzze what did you do?
suzze: i waited for a really long time, and nothing happened
Lonewolf: why not the others MS?
suzze: finally, i had to walk, was horrible experience, i was very sick
Lonewolf: sorry suzze did you complain
suzze: yes
MsAmazin: some airlines do not permit...just there policy...and airlines charge for use of their oxygen too
Lonewolf: what did they say?
WonderW: didn't united have a lawsuit over that?
anny1: i have always have had good luck with tranportation assistance in the airport
suzze: i got 2 $100 flight certificates
Lonewolf: oh
MsAmazin: I'm on sure WW
Lonewolf: so anny your experience has been positive
MsAmazin: on = not
MsAmazin: we will not go greyhound
Lonewolf: I have to pack a suitcase to go to town
WonderW: I think they did, so now it's allowed
anny1: yes except for the planes you have to board via stairs on the tarmack
Lonewolf: ok what's a tarmack?
MsAmazin: flight deck/runway
anny1: where the planes park big open space
Lonewolf: so no wheelchairs on those
anny1: donno if spelled correctly
Lonewolf: ??
Lonewolf: np
Lonewolf: has everyone here been on a plane?
suzze: yes
MsAmazin: I have
Mooooooo: yep
Woz: hehe
MsAmazin: my crutches were taken away a few yrs ago lol
Angel_27: i have twice
Lonewolf: on a plane ms?
MsAmazin: yes
suzze: they took my cane
Lonewolf: WHY
suzze: dangerous
MsAmazin: a guy across the aisle got them back when the attendant left
Lonewolf: what if ya have to go potty?
WonderW: I can't
Kark: planes I don't have much troubles but there are planes with stairs, I have been lucky not to have been on one
MsAmazin: exactly, and mine fit under the seat anyway
WonderW: use diapers on long flights
Lonewolf: so someone in a chair just holds it?
WonderW: yep
Lonewolf: yuck
MsAmazin: some planes have chairs that
MsAmazin: fit in the aisle and accessible restrooms
anny1: brb
Lonewolf: do you have to pay extra for that?
MsAmazin: no
WonderW: but if I were to travel alone, that wouldn't help
Lonewolf: hum I have only been on a plane once over 20 years ago-terrified me the entire 20 minutes-lol
WonderW: I have to be transferred
Lonewolf: no me either laura I wud need a bit of help
Lonewolf: do you all travel alone?
MsAmazin: I've flown to Puerto Rico and back several times....long way to hold it
suzze: i have
Lonewolf: yup
MsAmazin: I have...I flew to Va
WonderW: I have, yes, but only on short flights
Lonewolf: this all just amazes me
MsAmazin: my first solo flight
Lonewolf: oh
Kark: Yes but met someone at the other end
MsAmazin: was very smooth
WonderW: and somewhere where care needs taken care of
Angel_27: I flew from VA to Florida
suzze: i would prefer not to travel alone, have no choice
WonderW: which is rare
Lonewolf: what about the amtracks?
suzze: only did that once
MsAmazin: I've use amtrak twice
Lonewolf: there is no such thing around here
Lonewolf: accomodating?
MsAmazin: yes, and they give discounts to ppl with mobility probs
suzze: the agents/phone were really great
WonderW: I generally don't travel because I have to pay attendants ticket, accomodations, and time
MsAmazin: 15%
Lonewolf: wow
suzze: but..i got there late, and had reserved special seating, i believe these ppl tood my seating
MsAmazin: cuz of a lawsuit
Lonewolf: only place I have ever heard that give the disabled a dsiscount
suzze: was very uncomfortable on that leg of trip
suzze: going back was better
Lonewolf: IC suzze-what lawsuit ms
MsAmazin: they have train car specifically for ppl with disabilities...lift, HUGE restroom
WonderW: I called amtrack once when I was going to go to Phoenix, ended up not going, but they were great
MsAmazin: conductor will get food/drinks for you
Lonewolf: wow
Lonewolf: 5. Airplanes-is it safe to travel this way when you are handicapped? (or
Lonewolf: not)
suzze: i was going to/coming back from a disability conference
MsAmazin: a couple tried to travel by amtrak...couldn't get around and sued on behalf of ppl with disabilities and won
suzze: trains were overcrowded w/disabled
Lonewolf: IC
Lonewolf: suzze do you go to disability conferences often?
suzze: no, once a year
MsAmazin: I go monthly
suzze: that was only time i was on train
Lonewolf: wish you would do a meeting on them afterwards
Lonewolf: really?
Lonewolf: same with you ms
suzze: me?
Kark: are trains were overcrowded w/disabled because they are more accessable then other means of transportation
Lonewolf: bet you could teach us a lot
MsAmazin: yes, I'm involved in Partners in Policymaking
suzze: omg, don't know if i could
MsAmazin: we graduation in September
Lonewolf: great
Lonewolf: would u consider doing a meeting?
MsAmazin: yikes
Lonewolf: yes you could suzze
suzze: lol, my thought exactly
MsAmazin: heh...on?
Lonewolf: the meetings
Lonewolf: what's new
Lonewolf: what we need to know
Lonewolf: etc
Lonewolf: back to question
Lonewolf: 5. Airplanes-is it safe to travel this way when you are handicapped? (or
Lonewolf: not)
MsAmazin: we've had conferences on inclusive education, parliamentary procedure, SS,
anny1: i think planes are generally safe
MsAmazin: I haven't had a problem with airplanes
suzze: i think it is important to talk to the airlines if you are having any problems
WonderW: speaking of paratransit, my bus is late
WonderW: :)
Lonewolf: 4. List some safety and comfort measures for car travel.
MsAmazin: heh
WonderW: case in point
Lonewolf: what is paratransit?
WonderW: dial a ride, minivans
suzze: i only travel short distances by car
Lonewolf: oh ok
MsAmazin: safety measure: take enuff oxygen
Lonewolf: helps if needed
WonderW: that cover given areas
MsAmazin: :)
Lonewolf: IC
suzze: brink all your meds with you
Lonewolf: not available to me
Lonewolf: I feel like I pack a suitcase
suzze: i'm trying to keep some of my meds in car, so, if i unexpectedly am late, i have meds
MsAmazin: I went to AAA before my last trip and found out everything I needed to know about the route
Lonewolf: water, meds, extra pillows, chair, reading material for sitting and waiting
Lonewolf: but is that safe suzze-heat and all?
Woz: blanket for car
suzze: would be great safety measure to have a cell phone
Lonewolf: yes blanket
Lonewolf: I have to have a reclining seat
MsAmazin: we have cell phones...but no service
suzze: just my diabetes stuff, that's most important
Lonewolf: IC
MsAmazin: in the middle of the desert to vegas
Lonewolf: I have cell phone
Lonewolf: hum
suzze: i don't have cell phone:o)
WonderW: me too
suzze: wish i could
Lonewolf: I have to wear cervical collar in car
anny1: yes cell phones can be a lifesaver if car breaks down
MsAmazin: it came in handy when we were in the flood
Lonewolf: can't drive
Lonewolf: vibration on fragile disks
suzze: i should carry water with me all the time
suzze: i don't
MsAmazin: yes, I got cellphone for traveling to Ty's
Lonewolf: how many of you have wheel chair lifts in your vehicles
Angel_27: I do
MsAmazin: not me...I have a grand am
Lonewolf: what kind angel?
Lonewolf: would be hard in trans am
Angel_27: just a hydrolic lift to get us in van
MsAmazin: grand am
WonderW: my mom
Lonewolf: is it one you ride up on?
WonderW: has a van with lift
Lonewolf: IC
Angel_27: yes
Lonewolf: I have a lift that raises chair into back of mini van-not with me in it
Angel_27: its a van with a lift on it
anny1: i saw a really cool lift that moved a chair in and out of a pickup bed, you know the wheelchair cowboys here in tx hehe
Angel_27: we stay in chairs
Lonewolf: never seen that before
MsAmazin: hehe..have those here too
Lonewolf: even while in car?
Lonewolf: do chairs lock in place some way?
Angel_27: yes we have locks in the van
Lonewolf: what do you do for a seat belt
MsAmazin: do you drive Bev?
Angel_27: we have seatbelts on our chaors
Angel_27: chairs
Angel_27: not a t the moment
Angel_27: used to drive a car
Lonewolf: I do too-somewhere
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Lonewolf: hand controls?
Angel_27: hi reader
Angel_27: oops soory
Lonewolf: reader we are talking about car riding right now
Angel_27: no hand controls on van yet
Lonewolf: cud you still drive if you had them?
MsAmazin: I have handcontrols
Angel_27: yes if I learto drive a van, its bigger than my car was
Lonewolf: work well?
Lonewolf: hand controld I mean
Lonewolf: s
MsAmazin: yes...Ty is learning to drive
MsAmazin: too
Lonewolf: great
Lonewolf: WW do you drive?
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Lonewolf: guess her bus got there
Lonewolf: reader
Reader_13: I have a van but I'm pretty sure I'll never drive due to the level of my injury...
Lonewolf: who drives you?
Lonewolf: ok this is kinda nosey but how do you guys afford to get the lifts etc?
Reader_13: friends or I use public para transportation
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MsAmazin: hand controls for my vehicle were under $100
Reader_13: I was working full time when I bought mine... the lift...
MsAmazin: Nv has a program that will help ppl with modifications on vehicle
Lonewolf: how much was it?
Lonewolf: what's it called MS
Reader_13: $3000
Lonewolf: wow
MsAmazin: and also car companies will help with some costs $1000-$1500
Angel_27: we had some very dear friends that presented us with a van with lift as a suprise..the one we had was so old and breaking down all the time..They raised the money for this one
Lonewolf: that's really sweet bev
suzze: there are some programs
Angel_27: that was 2 yrs ago....the old van didnt have locks for chairs
suzze: Ford mobility program
Lonewolf: IC
Angel_27: it was a total suprise at Christmas
Lonewolf: I'm sure
Reader_13: OVR won't help with transportation unless the disabled person can drive... here in Pennsylvania
Lonewolf: have no idea what Ky has to offer
MsAmazin: check with DMV?
Lonewolf: but sure sould use a better lift
Lonewolf: good idea
Lonewolf: anyone else have anything to say?
anny1: there is program that will help ppl with developmental dis. get lifts/van's etc. called in-home family support
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Lonewolf: we have a program in Ky kinda like that but you can only apply once a year in April
Lonewolf: ROCK we are talking about cars and lifts etc
ROCK-: ok,tanks
Lonewolf: what about buses?
Lonewolf: anyone?
suzze: haven't been on acc buses
MsAmazin: greyhound sucks
Angel_27: we have a handicapped bus here that gets my husband back and forth to work sometimes
Lonewolf: so I gather amtrack and United Airlines are the best two travel choices
anny1: hard for me to climb steps on buses
MsAmazin: heh..sorry
Lonewolf: rock
Reader_13: PA uses large vans for the disabled...
Lonewolf: great
ROCK-: school busses now are equiped for that
MsAmazin: Reno has a bus program ...door to door service
Lonewolf: see I live wayyyyyyy out in the boonies-no services like those mentioned available
Angel_27: yep I rode school busses the whole time I was in school
anny1: we have a paratransit sys. but i hear its not too reliable
MsAmazin: we have 1 w/c accessible bus in my town
Lonewolf: hum
MsAmazin: a school bus
Lonewolf: I have no alternatives past family transport
Lonewolf: and it has to be in my car so the lift is available
MsAmazin: there isn't anything here either, LW
MsAmazin: I would be out of luck if I didn't drive
Lonewolf: good you can drive
anny1: yes lw rural definately has some disadvantages
Lonewolf: yes also live in small town
Lonewolf: well anymore horror stories?
MsAmazin: no taxi service here either
Lonewolf: here either
Lonewolf: wish we had amtrack
Reader_13: public para transit has its drawbacks-you can be bumped whenever they wish, you must inquire days ahead for rides, if you're late you may get stranded
MsAmazin: if you are in a w/c and caught in a flood in Vegas ..do NOT expect to catch a taxi!
Lonewolf: that could be bad reader
Lonewolf: very bad denise
suzze: big bonus to have disabled plates, allows me to go lots of places, downtown where i wouldn't go otherwise
MsAmazin: Ty experiences that often Reader
Lonewolf: I have the disabled placard
MsAmazin: I have placard...plates make me nervous
Lonewolf: know what aggravates me though?
suzze: why?
Lonewolf: small handicapped parking places-no room to get chair by caar
anny1: nervous??
Angel_27: i agree
MsAmazin: some ppl target ppl with plates
Reader_13: since I can't drive I can only use the placard
Lonewolf: what do you mean denise?
ROCK-: me too
Angel_27: handicapped spaces but not enough room to let lift down aggrivates me
MsAmazin: for crimes
Mooooooo: get plates -and- NRA Member stickers
anny1: hehe
Woz: hehe yup
suzze: lol, i've never had a problem
MsAmazin: haha
Lonewolf: oh IC
Mooooooo: im serious
Lonewolf: stolen placards have been common around here
MsAmazin: happened to a friend and I in Reno several yrs ago
Woz: me 2
Mooooooo: some car rental agencies put NRA stickers on rental cars
Lonewolf: oh my daniel
Lonewolf: why?
Mooooooo: criminals don't like people who can kill them first
suzze: rental cars=tourists
Lonewolf: IC
suzze: tourists crime targets
Lonewolf: max
anny1: is that rollin' and packin' huh mooooo
Woz: police advised me to remove nra sticker from front door
Mooooooo: yep
Woz: it scares them
Lonewolf: have any of you with placard had trouble with them falling apart before renewal time?
Mooooooo: thats why there are so few drive-by shootings and car robberies in Arizona
Reader_13: scares the police?
Woz: yes
suzze: i think it's the heat daniel
Lonewolf: rock
Mooooooo: we shoot back
ROCK-: mine is permanant and I forgot the rest,sorry
Lonewolf: np
MsAmazin: just got my new ones
Lonewolf: my newest one is only a year old and already taped together
anny1: what is it made of lw?
MsAmazin: can you request 2?
Lonewolf: anyone know of a way to prevent it?
Lonewolf: plastic
Lonewolf: rock
suzze: the one i had couldn't be broken
Reader_13: Laminate it
Lonewolf: I did
MsAmazin: mine is pretty sturdy too!
Lonewolf: don't laugh
Lonewolf: I used the iron on lamination
Lonewolf: it warped
anny1: mine seems to hold up fine
MsAmazin: that was prolly what made it fall apart lol
ROCK-: mine is permanent,but when it gets torn,it takes 2-3 months to get a new one
Lonewolf: my last one was all stapled together
Reader_13: put it between 2 clear pieces of plexiglass...
Lonewolf: that might work
Woz: dont leave plackards on car seats
Lonewolf: we stash mine under the seat
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Reader_13: van pockets
Lonewolf: well that's about it tonight
Woz: especialy plastic car seats
Lonewolf: I learned a lot tonight
anny1: glove compartment hee
anny1: here
Lonewolf: thanks everyone for all the input
Woz: plastics outgass
suzze: this must be a state thing, cause the ones they issue here, really they r unbreakable
Lonewolf: not here
suzze: yes, u live in cheap state
Lonewolf: you see tape and stuff on everyones
MsAmazin: same here suze
Lonewolf: lol-yup
Reader_13: lol
Angel_27: lol
suzze: your prisoners prob make them
suzze: badly on purpose
Lonewolf: yup
Lonewolf: sure do
Lonewolf: meeting is over
suzze: ok
Lonewolf: continue to talk as long as you wish
ROCK-: ok