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How the public see us

Hi I’m not sure if you know my history but I have had MS since my teens but was walking well until I got knocked down in a shoppoing centre by a woman on a mobility scooter - it put me into hospital - I have spinal damage as a result of this accident and I haven’t walked since. I’ve been campaiging at govermental level to bring in training for people using mobility scooters in public areas. I know I would have ended up in a wheelchair eventually but this accidnt meant it came earlier than I’d expected. The women who did it rode off shouting you’ll be alright I used to be a nurse - she damaged my spine, knocked out my teeth, put me into hospital for over 6 weeks and out of work for 6 months - and she doesn’t even know what she did - so I don’t know if her driving skills have improved.

Ironically I ended up using a mobility scooter first, but then progressed into a wheelchair as my MS then kicked in just to give me a final knock back.

;-( Mary

Hi Mary

I think I had read about your story with the mobility scooter and was so sorry to read that you had such a bad experience. I do agree that people shouldn’t be able to just get on them with no experience or some sort of test, I am also a strong advocate of insurance too, as you never know what might happen in a shop. I once got my handbag caught on the lever and shot across Sainsbury’s shop, fortunately there was no one about but have been much more careful since. I also did this with my dog’s lead on our driveway and my poor little blind jack russell had no idea that she’d run me over!

I drive a differnt buggy these days that is slightly smaller and much more manoeuvrable.

Wendy x

Hi I’m not sure if you know my history but I have had MS since my teens but was walking well until I got knocked down in a shoppoing centre by a woman on a mobility scooter - it put me into hospital - I have spinal damage as a result of this accident and I haven’t walked since. I’ve been campaiging at govermental level to bring in training for people using mobility scooters in public areas. I know I would have ended up in a wheelchair eventually but this accidnt meant it came earlier than I’d expected. The women who did it rode off shouting you’ll be alright I used to be a nurse - she damaged my spine, knocked out my teeth, put me into hospital for over 6 weeks and out of work for 6 months - and she doesn’t even know what she did - so I don’t know if her driving skills have improved.

Ironically I ended up using a mobility scooter first, but then progressed into a wheelchair as my MS then kicked in just to give me a final knock back.

;-( Mary

You have been through the wars. She should have been held responsible. That should have been treated the same way a hit and run incident with a car is handled. Don’t you need insurance for a scooter like you do with a car or motorbike? I never imagined an accident with one of those could do so much damage, but thinking about it they’re really heavy. I hope you get results with your campaign.

Sorry, don’t know what I did but lost the quote box from last post.

Min x

I get in a muddle with the quote thingy too Min and sometimes it all just goes wrong.

Wendy x

Mary, that’s so sad, she should have been held responsible :frowning:

Sonia x

God theorising, that’s awful. But that’s kind of what I’m talking about. I’m sorry to hear of your accident and I think your campaign is a great idea.

I think a mutual consideration is needed. When you’re standing you don’t look down so you probably wouldn’t be aware of someone in a chair behind you. It might be irritating for the person in the chair but ramming into their ankles won’t help really.

There’s a guy I grew up with who has been in a chair since birth. He’s a menace on the road. lovely guy but he seems to think his chair means he can just scoot across the road and not watch for traffic or stop in the road on a bend causing the cars that come around the corner to break really hard.

He ploughs into people in the pub and I’ve suffered a few bruises on my shins when I didn’t get out of the way as quickly as he wanted.

And in return people who are able bodied should be more aware of what’s going on around them and open doors, offer up seats etc. It’s just manners really and sadly some people are lacking. Some of those are able bodied and some are wheelchair uses.

Bit of consideration goes a long way.

I find I get more consideration in big towns/cities with my stick than I do in my little home town.

The problem is it’s a seaside resort which gets very busy in summer (the population doubles) so the pavements are much busier and I think it makes it harder for pedestrians to notice my stick. Add to that the fact that whole families are sauntering along, often taking up the whole width of the pavement, and are too busy enjoying themselves to notice anything else and you can see my problem. My latest tactic is to just stand still as they advance on me and look down at my stick - at this point they hastily pull their children to one side to let me pass.

It can be even worse in shops where goods are often displayed on the floor making the aisles very narrow and again where whole families are meandering in a stop/start/stop fashion. Then I have a problem paying for goods with my stick dangling from my wrist; if I rest it on the counter it invariably falls to the floor! I used to love pottering around the independent shops but the supermarket seems much easier now - a trolley to hang onto and put all my purchases into then wheel them all the way to the car.

The whole lack of awareness from the general public does make me a bit reluctant to go out now unless it’s really necessary as it’s just too much hassle and makes me feel quite vulnerable. I’m well aware that I only need one blissfully unaware person to knock my stick, throw my balance more off than it is already and I could easily find myself sprawled across the floor.

Tracey x

Hi Tracey

I certainly know about sticks falling over, I did take to using crutches so that when you stop they don’t fall over. I’m back to using ordinary sticks now, as the crutches became too heavy and cumbersome. I am sorry to read that it’s put you off going out though, very sad. Must say I tend to shop mostly on line these days.

Wendy x

Hi Wendy

I’m still hopeful that I will get back to ‘normal’ although, with hindsight, a stick would have helped me a while ago, at least on my bad days.

I had a relapse in March affecting my right leg and then the left leg decided to join in (not sure if I’m over-compensating for the right leg or if it’s part of the relapse). I’m waiting for physio but could be a long time :frowning: . In the meantime I’m doing yoga stretches each day to keep moving but I know part of the problem is my balance and I’m interested to see what I can do about that. It doesn’t help that I lose feeling in the whole of my feet as soon as I walk 100m but that’s improving every few weeks and the feeling does come back after I’ve rested for a while.

I’m determined to manage without the stick for the majority of the time. If I can get down to 5 days a week without the stick I’ll be dead chuffed.

Tracey x

Good luck with that Tracey, I do hope you recover from the relapse. My balance is pretty bad, I am also waiting for physio but in the meantime I am attending MS physio classes twice a month and must say the physio is very good, especially as she gives us printed sheets and we have ‘homework’.

Wendy x

Hi Wendy

MS physio classes? That doesn’t seem to be an option in my area! All I’ve been told is that I’m on the list for physio,which is very long, and they will contact me again when I reach the top! The joys of living in the sticks :wink:

I’m sure after my very long trek from the bus stop, through the hospital, out through the gardens and into another building I will look quite wrecked so will see if the neuro has any other suggestions rather than waiting it out for the physio …

Tracey x

It’s easy, the walking stick/ arm crutch is the trade mark of the bad back/benefits brigade, when in sight of the public, hence no respect from the general public.

I hate having to use arm crutches, for this very reason.

So have become a virtual recluse.

Take care.

Chris R.

I. El. (Eng). (Rtd).

Sorry to hear that Chris you take care too.

Wendy x

Hi Chris

I hadn’t thought of that. You could be right. I only get any respect when I have gone over 100m and then I start to look as bad as I feel. At that point I get the awful sympathetic glances and people do start to give me a wide berth. Perhaps I should do the 100m before I set off for the local shops?

Tracey x