Beach wheelchair rental?

Discussion in 'Business, Goods and Services' started by jensieblue, Jun 14, 2005.

  1. jensieblue

    jensieblue Beach Fanatic

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    Comming to the Beach in a few months and need to rent a wheelchair for use on the beach. Prefer the Tiralo if possible. Can anyone tell me where I might prearange this rental for pick up when I get to the beach? jensieblue
     
  2. kurt

    kurt Admin Staff Member

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    Those are cool: http://www.tiralo-usa.com

    I haven't seen one around here - anybody?

    I'll ask around - may have to get one in Destin.
     
  3. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I want a ride.
     
  4. phdphay

    phdphay Beach Fanatic

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    Good luck. Beaches don't like older people (except maybe at Sea Island or up in the tony Northeastern beaches where old money rules). Down here, we're supposed to set up our beach tents and chairs and take them down every day, regardless of whether or not we've have open-heart surgery or whatever. My mother is handicapped due to osteoporosis and a hip fracture and can't even walk out to the beach. Apparently the beach crowd is turned off by people who are ill and handicapped. It would be a blight on the photo-ops.
     
  5. BeachDreamer

    BeachDreamer Beach Fanatic

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    What a cool beach wheelchair! I had no idea they made such a thing. I hope you can find one to rent in the area, Jensieblue. Enjoy your trip!
     
  6. jensieblue

    jensieblue Beach Fanatic

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    Thanks...I have a good group of friends comming with me and Destin would be doable. I really appreciate any information you come across. Thanks Jennie
     
  7. jensieblue

    jensieblue Beach Fanatic

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    Tell your Mom to hang in there. As for people who are turned off by illness and handicaps, they better get over it. Life has a way of biting you when you're not looking. I'm 57 and before I began to have symptoms, was into scuba diving, camping, river running and anything else I could think of. Now I plan to live my life to the max. I plan to wear a red cowgirls hat while riding in my chair. I would sure hate to run over some of those snobs in my wheelchair but hey, I'm disabled. Thanks....
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2005
  8. jensieblue

    jensieblue Beach Fanatic

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    Thanks for your time and interest. I am coming with a group of good friends so Destin or anywhere in the vicinity would work. So far the closest place I have found to rent the chair is Tampa.
     
  9. TooFarTampa

    TooFarTampa SoWal Insider

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    Welcome jensieblue. I've spent some time today thinking about your post, because if we ever have a renter in a similar situation I would like to know what to tell her.

    First of all, I don't think the lack of chair availability has anything to do with snobbery or photo-ops or prejudice or whatever. The business market along 30-A has not matured yet (I'm sure any number of us can come up with great business ideas, if only we lived there full time!) because the area has grown so rapidly. If the bike rental companies are not aware there is a demand, they won't offer them. So since you have a couple of months, it might be worth your while to call a couple of bike places and see if they've considered it. I don't have any names, though ... Kurt, can you think of a few she can call?

    The other issue I can think of is access. The same dunes that Paula rightly praised for saving our homes from storm surge make it very difficult for people with any kind of disability to get down to the beach. For example, after Hurricane Ivan, in most places you had the 25 or 30 foot dunes plus a beach that was suddenly very narrow. As a result they had to build VERY steep stairs so people could get down. There is just no way you can build a ramp system that would meet ADA standards so people with chairs can get safely down to the beach. There is just no room. I imagine hydraulic lifts would be a possibility, but the sea air would rapidly damage them and any storms would destroy them.

    So if you are not at all ambulatory, you have to figure out first which beaches you can even get to. Grayton Beach State Park is the first and obvious thought, but I have no idea what kind of handicapped parking it offers. Can anyone tell her the best places for handicapped parking and walk-out access?

    If the SoWal beaches are severely lacking in this department, that is something Walton County officials need to address in some manner. Because of the high dunes and narrow beaches not everyone can be accommodated in every area, but there should be a reasonable solution and a place where disabled people can rent those way-cool chairs nearby so they can get the full beach experience.

    As far as the beach umbrellas and chairs, they are available for rent along the beach. You can hire a company to have them available for you for the week, so you don't have to put them up/take them down every day, etc.

    Hope you have a great trip. Let us know what you find out so we can spread the word if this question comes up again! :D
     
  10. Sheila

    Sheila SoWal Insider

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    Deer Lake Park.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 25, 2005
  11. bhilyer

    bhilyer Beach Comber

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    We're coming out this weekend and could also use a wheelchair rental.
    So if you hear of any, let me know.
    My parents are flying into Pensacola so I'm going to check that area, too.

    Do Deer Lake and Grayton State Park both have walkout ramps instead of walkovers?
    That would definitely be an option for getting my dad on the beach late in the day.
    Are their any other places?
    Does the county make exceptions for taking a vehicle on the beach if you are a non-resident and handicapped?
     
  12. Beach Runner

    Beach Runner beats on hood

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    The last time I went to Deer Lake, it was handicapped-accessible all the way to the top of the dunes. But I haven't seen the ramp from the dunes down to the beach get repaired since Ivan.
     

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