Hand Controls in a Van

More excuses…Please don’t get fed up with me. This past week was very stressful, with the school year winding down and the rowing season coming to a close there is a lot going on. Then, on top if that, I was given the opportunity to interview for the full-time math instructor opening at the school that I am working at.

I’m back…

More excuses…Please don’t get fed up with me.  This past week was very stressful, with the school year winding down and the rowing season coming to a close there is a lot going on.  Then, on top if that, I was given the opportunity to interview for the full-time math instructor opening at the school that I am working at.  For the interview, I was asked to teach a stand-alone lesson, which is a lesson that does not need any previous knowledge and does not need anything going forward.  I decided to teach some probability and statistics, which led into a lesson about the birthday paradox, which after some calculations, you figure out that in a room of 23 people, there is a greater than 50% chance of someone having the same birthday as someone else.  If you have questions…I will help you out.  Regardless, the interview was a 3-step process, which I feel really good about.  I hope that I get the position.  Long story short, that is why I did not write my article last week.  I did not forget about you, though.

So…with the rowing season coming to a close, and it being a successful season, our top boat qualified for youth nationals in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.  It is a big deal, and probably the toughest high school race in America.  As the head of the program I was given the task of figuring out and finalizing all of the travel arrangements.  I called and rented the van, and got hotel reservations. Things were going smoothly until Memorial Day Monday.  We are going to Tennessee with a total of 8 people, 6 students and 2 coaches.  It is a 13-hour drive, and the coach and I were going to share driving duties.  I drive with hand controls, which attach to the foot pedals, and a spinner knob.  I called Enterprise to rent a 15-passenger van, so that we could all fit comfortably.  I then asked for the addition of hand controls, which the national operator who handles putting hand controls into the van, was VERY excited about.  This would be his first time putting hand controls in a 15-passenger van.  I finished the process and was excited; I got my confirmation and we were ready to go!  I put together the budget, gave it to my athletic director and we were ready to go!

Then, I got the call on Monday from another person from Enterprise letting me know that they could not put hand controls in the 15-passenger van.  They gave me no reason other than they cannot do it.  I tried pleading my case, but there was no one else working, as it was a holiday, and I was told I could deal with it the next day.  There is nothing written on the website on having a protocol of not being able to put hand controls in a 15-passenger van.  There is also nothing structurally different about the make and the location of the pedals in a 15-passenger van.  I think it is out of laziness.  I tried calling the next day, and there was no answer at the location.  That is where I stand now…I will keep you informed.  I called a couple of other rental car companies, and will get to the bottom of this, and get a van with hand controls.

Has something like this ever happened to you?

@scottysuss

1 thought on “Hand Controls in a Van”

  1. Hey Scotty, while I don’t have a limiting physical disability, and have personally not dealt with this issue, I have known people who have. A friend of mine was in the market for a new car, and I remember how frustrated he was with the logistics of getting hand controls on his car. He couldn’t test-drive the car, because they wouldn’t install them on the test models, so he bought his car without driving it! Wow! Also, I remember talking to him about it and he said that not all car models, companies, etc. have cars that can have hand controls, so that is another limiting factor. He also had to make sure the car didn’t have bucket seats, because he wouldn’t be able to get in and out of them. When buying cars with a physical disability, there are so many considerations that I never thought of before, so it was a nice perspective knowing his experience in the car-buying biz.

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