Driving with hand RA: Hi All I have driven my car from... - NRAS

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Driving with hand RA

B3ntl3y profile image

Hi All

I have driven my car from Jan 21

I have R A in both hands and my grip is poor

Was wondering if anyone knows a test to take to confirm Im safe to drive Or is it down to me

My car is manual

Thanks

28 Replies

My advice would be to check out a automatic. I have my hubby to drive me about and my trusty scooter. Other than that i am sorry i can't help you. xxx

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to sylvi

Ok thanks

I think you can do a practical driving assessment through the DVLA or you have a medical condition that may impair your ability to drive. I don’t know how you go about organising it though but you maybe able to give the DVLA a call

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to Gif1986

Thank you

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to Gif1986

Hi thanks for the advice have a assessment booked for 13 Dec so hopefully it will be ok Then will get an automatic

Gif1986 profile image
Gif1986 in reply to B3ntl3y

Amazing! So glad that was correct and that you have it booked. Good luck with it!! 🤞🏻

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to Gif1986

Yer 🤞will be good result

Another vote for an automatic - much easier.

You might want to try asking a driving instructor for advice; they might know the best way to go about it. When my husband had a stroke, his OT did an assessment and he also checked with his GP but the rules seemed very vague. The OT said that he could ask for some sort of assessment at an official driving centre (maybe run by the DVLA but I can't remember) but that there was a long waiting list so if he just wanted reassurance, to book a lesson with a driving instructor. She also said that he and I were probably the best judges....

It all seemed very casual to us tbh and it's made me think quite carefully about the fact that any driver I come across might not be 100% - not that I can claim to be perfect either!

Yes it is down to you to declare ….so I would speak to a Physio…to get assessed & maybe get some exercises…to help with your hands. If you don’‘t feel safe then of course you should not drive…but do be aware getting your licence back ….should you lose it by self declaring ….can be a very long drawn out process…so do get some clinical advice before you decide what to do…..Especially as right now the DVLA is under great pressure & everything is even slower than usual.

You can get ball aids for the steering wheel, and should get an automatic. If you go on the ‘mobility’ site they have links to ‘assessment centres’ for adaptations etc. They do seem to be nationwide.

Only you know if you are safe to drive - as soon as anyone sits behind the wheel of a vehicle they are declaring themselves fit to drive.

I wonder if the Motability website has any info on fitness to drive tests etc.?

I have always worn driving gloves so that I don't have to grip so tightly. Also, driving an automatic or electric car makes driving easier. I did have some physio with exercises to improve strength in my hands.

Definitely automatic car. I also have a steering ball which attaches to the wheel and makes it much easier to steer.

Don't know if you have a Drivabilty centre near you but that would be a good place to start. We have one in Derby which is not too far from me.

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to Maggsie

Yer got one booked 11 Dec thanks

I have problematic hands. My new car has a steering wheel warmer and I put a cushioned cover on it (helps me hold the wheel without hurting my hands). The new car has a remarkable guided steering feature. If there are lines on the road it will stay within those lines. My hands can be off the wheel for a bit and it will stay in the lines. I didn't pick the car for these features, I didn't know how helpful it would be. It is very helpful. (It isn't self-driving, but you don't have to grip the wheel and steer it when in cruise control.)

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to JenHasRA

Wow that’s sounds brilliant

nomoreheels profile image
nomoreheels in reply to JenHasRA

Ours is heated too. My h has used it but I haven't yet. He says it's great though. Looking forward to that on cold winter days, toasty warm hands, back & bum. 😉

I don't know if this is the same but if it is I agree the lane keep assist/lane departure warning is a useful option, especially on the motorway when it's raining. The head up display too, though I admit to thinking that was a bit gimmicky when we were researching before buying.

CripLady profile image
CripLady in reply to nomoreheels

Heated steering wheel details please…. Specific to your car? Or an add on??

nomoreheels profile image
nomoreheels in reply to CripLady

Standard spec on model. It's automatic shut off after 30 mins but that can be overridden by turning it on again.

CripLady profile image
CripLady in reply to nomoreheels

Cool.. thanks x

CripLady profile image
CripLady in reply to JenHasRA

Heated steering wheel details please…. Specific to your car? Or an add on??

My dad was a history teacher and was always ready to say 'stay away from the government whenever possible. They are a machine not a human.' Do you think your performance on a test like this today would ever stop you from driving now or in the future? Or cost you more? Or be used against you unjustly in some manner? There is probably a video online that could help you test yourself. I use to not be paranoid....

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to JenHasRA

How do you think they could use it against me ?

JenHasRA profile image
JenHasRA in reply to B3ntl3y

Someday someone starts deciding who can drive a car and be on the road and who has to use public transportation. And they start with people who have demonstrated deficits, no matter how minimal they might be. I think it’s out there - not tomorrow. Insurance companies find information that informs them you are at greater risk - and your rates go up. That’s what I was thinking. I think I’m unsocialized and impulsively responded. You should do what makes you confident! That is the most important thing. Occupational therapists can give you functional assessment also. : )

B3ntl3y profile image
B3ntl3y in reply to JenHasRA

Morning I get what your saying think you think like me ( not sure if that’s good or bad)I’m suspicious of the government never trust them

I just want to be legal and be covered

How long do you give drugs before they can be confirmed as not working

Thanks for your reply

Another vote for changing to an automatic. I resisted for ages because I loved driving a manual but slow moving traffic & clutch combination sealed the deal. When you do start looking to test drive automatics, which you'll probably do anyway, you'll see even automatic gearbox selectors differ. We had one which was difficult to press the button to engage, the next had no button at all but was still in the area where the gear stick would be, a bit awkward for me with shoulder problems. The best one for me was the one like an indicator stalk but on the right of the steering wheel, so easy. I wish we'd have been able to have the same in our latest but height & ease of getting in & out took precedence & the similar style/height in the same make were beyond our budget. Plus the luggage room was limited, not that we need it for luggage that often, it's the dogs! With our current one you just need to have your foot on the brake to select & whilst the selector is in the traditional place there's little resistance so not hard on my shoulder. There are probably more correct ways of describing each of them but it's my driving language & hope you'll understand it! 🤨😊

If you declare a health condition to DVLA then you also need to tell your insurance company (for example Reason: xxxx - DVLA aware - no restrictions) otherwise your insurance could either be invalid or is a good reason for the insurance company to refuse a claim. Insurance company should not penalise you (higher premium) if you have no restrictions. V

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