Adverse weather conditions can be difficult for a person with mobility limitations to navigate. Even having a wheelchair ramp installed at your home may require extra caution when the surface is wet, icy, or slippery in other ways. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, three million people over the age of 65 get treated in the emergency department every year because of a fall, and more than 800,000 of those patients are hospitalized as a result. Preventing falls should be a priority for anyone striving for independent living. And when it comes to your wheelchair ramp, the type of surface you have makes a difference. Consider these points if you’re thinking about investing in a wheelchair ramp.
Benefits Of A Solid Surface Wheelchair Ramp
Many homeowners like the look of a solid surface wheelchair ramp. The solid surface offers great stability due to the construction of the materials and is designed to withstand some of the harshest winter weather elements. However, when it comes to accessibility, some precautions need to be taken before walking on them during adverse weather conditions. A solid surface wheelchair ramp will need to be swept off after a snowstorm since the snow doesn’t have anywhere to go. And rain can make the solid surface slippery unless you have non-slip mats to help you keep your stability.
Why Mesh Wheelchair Ramps Are Ideal In The Winter
A wheelchair ramp with a mesh surface may be more ideal in the winter since rain and snow can go through the open holes. The open mesh design won’t compromise the stability of the ramp and can make maintaining it during the winter much easier. Light snow will go through the mesh holes, while heavy snow may accumulate some depending on how severe the storm is. Still, it will be much easier to sweep off the snow through the mesh design and can provide you with more traction during slippery conditions.
Prepare Your Ramp For Any Weather Condition
Regardless of the wheelchair ramp you choose for your home, preparation for winter weather is critical. Some people choose to improve accessibility by placing non-slip rugs or mats on the ramp to reduce the risk of slipping. It’s also valuable to use calcium chloride salt to help melt the ice on your solid surface ramp. Just be sure to sweep or wash off the salt after the weather event to reduce the risk of slipping afterward.
People who live in areas with frequent snow during the winter likely know what to do to live as normal of a life as possible. If you need additional accessibility at your home, Next Day Access offers both solid surface and mesh wheelchair ramps to suit your needs. We are available to provide you with tips and advice depending on your living situation and keep you as safe as possible this winter. Feel free to contact us at any time to learn more about our options and how to stay safe with a wheelchair ramp this winter.