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What happens when a handicapped person is in a car accident?

In Oklahoma, there are many people in special education who have special needs and have a desire to travel and need transportation that fits their needs. Special education is another way of saying that there is specifically designed instruction methods, usually away from their home, that meets these individuals' needs. They must be able to get where they are going in order to partake of special education safely.

Getting into any type of accident is frightening because it usually involves injury. But when you take someone with special needs and put them in this situation the harm ramps up enormously. Being special needs means that the person is impaired in some fashion, be it visual impairment, hearing impaired, paraplegic or quadriplegic instances, to name just a few. There must be an emergency evacuation plan when it comes to getting into a car accident.

First, park the vehicle safely and set the parking brake. If it is a manual transmission, however, it must be in either first or reverse. It is important to stay calm and make the decision about whether you can safely remove the person who is disabled by yourself or if you will need assistance. Is there oxygen on board? You need to ensure that no one has an open flame, such as a cigarette. If there is any hint of fire, immediate action will be needed to put out the flame. Hopefully, the authorities will be on hand quickly.

You may find yourself in a situation that requires a lot of help if someone hits you while you are transporting a special needs individual. After the accident, you are faced with insurance settlements and possibly a court battle. You don't need the aggravation of dealing with either thing at a time like this. You need to heal from your own injuries and be there for the person who is handicapped while he or she also heals.

Source: Oklahoma Department of Transportation, "Guidelines for transportation of students with special needs," accessed Oct. 19, 2015

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