Shops, schools, nightclubs: so many venues and institutions are inaccessible to those of us in wheelchairs who need to use ramps.
But what are the benefits of owning a portable ramp yourself? If you have questions surrounding this, please read on; they will hopefully be answered!
1- Portable: what it says on the tin!
Ramps are not as big, bulky and heavy as they used to be. They are now often made from extremely lightweight materials such as aluminium, and can fold in the centre, making them portable and able to fit into car boots. If you work somewhere that requires better access, a portable ramp may well be the answer! Portable wheelchair ramps are an affordable, short-term solution for businesses and individuals alike.
2- Ramps without ramping up the cost
You will undoubtedly be able to find a portable wheelchair ramp to fit within your budget. Dependent on materials, durability, quality, weight and length, portable wheelchair ramps can range from £80-£800 (with equivalent prices available in Euros). So whether you’re wanting a portable ramp for weekends visits only, or a daily portable ramp for disabled customers to your business, you’ll surely find a portable wheelchair ramp that fits and suits your needs.
3- The possibilities are endless
Wanting a shorter ramp that is portable but doesn’t need to fold and can therefore keep its strength? No problem. Looking for a ramp with grips on the underside to ensure minimal slippage? That’s easy to find. There’s plenty of possibilities when it comes to finding the portable wheelchair ramp that’s right for you, all it will take is a little bit of searching online!
4- What type of ramp should I choose?
Threshold ramps are very useful if you’re just looking to get yourself and your chair over the threshold of a door. These ramps are anti-slip and high traction, and create an upside-down ‘U’ shape over the threshold, so you can get over both sides of it safely, whether you’re coming in or out of the house, shop or workplace.
If you’re looking for an incline ramp to go over a set of steps, you should be looking at either single-fold wheelchair ramps (that fold up in half and can be carried like a suitcase with handles), or tri-fold wheelchair ramps that separate in sections before folding and are welded from durable, lightweight materials like aluminium.
If you’re wanting to get your power chair in or out of your vehicle, choosing a tri-fold ramp with a longer top lip would be the way to go. Then, the top of the ramp can safely rest on the floor of your vehicle and there’ll be no worries about it moving or slipping!
5- Can I use a portable ramp with my Power Chair?
Of course! Just remember to think about the weight that the ramp is going to have to hold. Power chair ramps exist in abundance, and will be able to hold much more weight than a light ramp aimed at occasional use for manual chair users. There are plenty of ramps that can hold up to 360 kg of weight – just make sure you buy the right one.
6- How wide should my ramp be?
The minimum width of any ramp should be 36 inches, to allow for the size of your wheelchair and the space you need to manoeuvre whilst going up or down. Wider ones are available, it just depends on what is comfortable for you.
7- How steep should my ramp be?
When considering the incline of a ramp, the general rule is that, in order for it to be safe for both you and your manual or power wheelchair, you’re going to need one foot of ramp for every inch of incline. So, for a six inch incline, you’re going to need at least six feet of ramp.
And one final point to consider…
Make sure that the surface the ramp will be resting on or attached to is stable, flat and even, to prevent any wobbles or accidents! Any portable wheelchair ramp is only as good as the resources and environment around it.