Woody’s Words – Week 53 – Drive a Car

Woody's Words

Woody the Safety Bloke shows us how he drives a car.

Good day everyone. Woody again. This week I want to show you how I drive a car. I use hand controls. I’ve got no control or function of my feet at all. So to drive a car, I have to use a set of hand controls to accelerate and brake. So this is Ute. I use it most of the time. I’ve got a couple of other cars but this is the car that I drive most of the time. I’ll just show you how it works. 

Firstly, I have to get into the car. So I just pull up alongside it in my wheelchair. I lift myself out of my chair into the driver’s seat. So there you go, I’m in the car. Normally, if I’m by myself, I have to pull my wheelchair apart and lift it into the passenger seat. So I take my chair with me, that’s when my little mate blue is not in the car with me as well. But this is the thing that I wanted to show you – the hand controls. Now, this is a Ford factory engineered set of hand controls. A few years ago, if you bought a new Falcon, you could actually option it with a set of hand controls. So you’ve got this extra lever that’s out of the side there; now there are full mechanical set of hand controls, there’s no electronics or hydraulics or anything that could possibly go wrong. It’s all mechanical linkages. So if you just have a look at this, I don’t know how close you can get in, but that’s the lever that I hold onto while I’m driving the car, and pretty much it’s just pull it back, pull it for accelerator and push it down for brakes. 

So I’ll show you that again. It’s back for accelerator and down for brakes. So you can see there’s a full mechanical bar there. There is a steel bar that goes down onto the brake pedal. You can’t see it but underneath the dash here, there is a mechanical linkage that pulls back on the accelerator or actually, when I pull back on this lever that pushes the accelerator down. 

Now, the other thing is that the pedals are still there. I’m not sure if you can see the pedals but they’re still there. So anybody else can drive my car using the foot pedal. 

The only issue that I have is that I can’t drive a manual car. It has to be an automatic and I can’t drive a car that doesn’t have a set of hand controls fitted. All of my vehicles have to have a different set of hand controls. So there’s a lot of extra process, because you’ve got to get these hand controls fitted; also, the cost involved. This is a Ford factory set of hand controls. In one of my other vehicles, I had to fit a set of hand controls and it costs probably about two and a half to three thousand dollars just to get the hand control supplied and fit in. So, it all adds up. 

Don’t hurt yourself people. It changes a lot of different things and it costs a lot of money. I am Woody; stay safe Australia.

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