So I’m about a week into wheelchairing in Northern Virginia and Washington DC. there are a few things to gripe about. For those who have wheelchaired a lot here, I suppose it comes as no surprise, but for people who are going to come here, there’s a few things to know.
There are a few issues but I’ll start with a basic one that will be sure to discourage anyone trying to go for an outing in a wheel chair.
THE SIDEWALKS ARE RUBBISH
This is a diagram of a DC sidewalk.
That’s right. The sidewalks are slanted towards the road. For what possible reason, I do not know, so it must be a matter of shoddy workmanship. Your wheelchair will FIGHT to fly right into the road which is obviously filled with road traffic. You can still manage, however, if the sidewalks themselves were even, but they’re not. Several times, you’ll run into a situation where only one of the two big wheels you can power and control your wheel chair with is in contact with the ground and so your chair just hopelessly spins so that you end up facing the road. It’s pretty disheartening.
No wonder folks get the powered ones.
And if DC was a mountainous area, I would understand, but honestly, land doesn’t get flatter than this and again is another example of sub par American products and services.
And I haven’t even started talking about the Metro (subway) either.