People who suffer catastrophic injuries in an accident to their vision, head, hands or feet often suffer from a problem that’s not immediately apparent to anyone that hasn’t already been there — the loss of their freedom.
For example, if someone loses the majority of his or her vision in a car crash, his or her lives can be disrupted in many ways — but even after adapting to most of the changes, he or she is still faced with the loss of freedom. They may have been accustomed to hopping in their cars and driving wherever they wanted to go — but now they have to figure out who they can call to take them to the next doctor’s appointment, the grocery store, the pharmacy and more.
If this is your situation, how can you adapt without feeling like you’re a burden to everyone you know?
1. Consider relocating.
As difficult as it may be, you may need to relocate in order to retain your freedom of movement. Rural areas and small towns often have fewer options for transportation. A city can make learning to live without driving much easier.
2. Hire a driver.
If you still have your own car, consider hiring a driver. If you put out a call for help through local message boards, neighbors, nursing organizations and even university students, you may be able to find a driver with a flexible schedule who will work for a reasonable hourly fee (and an occasional bonus lunch thrown in).
3. Investigate car services.
Ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft have become a wonderful options in smaller cities and places where cabs are less plentiful. You can often arrange to make multiple stops in one trip and even hire someone just to pick up carryout for you. The bonus with these services is that they can also be called on short notice.
4. Check into disability programs.
Many local communities have programs that will provide rides to the disabled. While they take a little advance organizing (they aren’t as good on short notice as Uber or Lyft), they’re often free or have only a nominal fee to anyone who is disabled.
Losing your license due to a catastrophic injury doesn’t mean you have to become a recluse — but you certainly want to include the future costs of your transportation into your settlement negotiations. An attorney can provide more information.
Source: www.visionaware.org, “The Transportation Problem: Finding Rides When You Can’t Drive,” Audrey Demmitt, accessed Aug. 09, 2017