Buchan Caves Stairclimber and world-first wheelchair design improving access
Tuesday 7 October, 2014
A new stairclimber and motorised all-terrain wheelchair at Buchan Caves Reserve will help people with a disability to enjoy the spectacular caves and their surrounds.
This stairclimber will allow children and small adults with a disability to experience the spectacular beauty of the Fairy Cave for the first time ever. In the past, the steep and narrow steps leading to the caves made it impossible for those using a wheelchair or walking stick to access the caves. However, the specially designed stairclimber that will be operated by Parks Victoria cave guides can take children and small adults with limited mobility into the Fairy Cave.
Also recently launched was the world’s first motorised all-terrain wheelchair that will be available at the end of November to help people with limited mobility explore Buchan Caves Reserve and Cape Conran Coastal Park.
All-terrain wheelchairs are suited for sandy and semi-rough tracks and this new motorised version was designed to make it easier for people to explore the hilly trails in these areas. The all-terrain wheelchair is suitable for children and adults, is easy to disassemble and fits in the back of a station wagon. There is no charge for visitors to use the chairs.
Victoria is the first state in Australia to have all-terrain wheelchairs and other states are now showing interest in the program and utilising our expertise and experience with them.
Two new picnic tables that can be accessed by people in wheelchairs are also soon to be installed at Buchan Caves Reserve.
The equipment is part of a broader program instigated by Parks Victoria to improve park access for all. The program has resulted in 15 wheelchairs being provided in seven parks across Victoria in the past three years.
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