In this video, Russel talks about spinal cord injury driving, driving as a disabled person, paralyzed driving, and the freedom and adventure it has given his life. His journey getting back into driving after a spinal cord injury is inspiring.
Russel has been a wheelchair user since he was quite young. He was paralyzed when a drunk driver ran into his family one night on their way home. Despite that, he always knew that he would want to drive. He even knew that he would enjoy it and that it would be something that defined him, especially because of how much he enjoyed road trips as a child. When it was finally time for him to take his driver’s test at age 16, he was excited, and remembers going to get hand controls installed into the van and beginning to learn the basics of driving in vacant parking lots or down the empty back roads. The first time Russel drove somewhere – a relatively short 40-minute drive from his house to his aunt and uncle’s house – he felt a sense of accomplishment and freedom.
Driving represented independence, adventure, freedom and excitement to him back then, and it still does now almost 20 years later. But what driving really allowed Russel to do was get out on his own and really learn what it took to take care of himself, alone in the world, and how to only ask for help when he truly needed it.
Having a Spinal Cord Injury is not a barrier to doing the things you want to do. Did you know that driving is possible with all sorts of different types of disabilities? For those without the use of their legs, there are hand-controls, and for those without full use of their hands there are even joysticks and many different types of ways to drive. Driving after a Spinal Cord Injury can provide freedom, independence, and peace of mind.
If you enjoyed today’s video about spinal cord injury driving, driving as a disabled person, and paralyzed driving, please remember to like, share, subscribe and comment if you have any questions, suggestions or feedback. I hope to see you here again soon!