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Thursday, 07 March 2013

Driving Technology for the Disabled

INNOVATE: A prototype car designed for individuals with disabilities will be unveiled at the CPUT Bellville Campus, during the Disability Drive Expo

CPUT will make history today with the unveiling of a prototype car that will make driving more accessible for disabled persons in South Africa.

The prototype was designed and developed by CPUT innovators, Professors Oscar Philander and Mugendi M’Rithaa, and is the first ever locally-engineered prototype car to feature joystick engineering.

The prototype will be unveiled at the Disability Drive Expo, which will take place on the Bellville Campus.

This vehicle will open up a world of affordable and accessible driving opportunities for disabled persons in South Africa.

The project was inspired by Nicky Abdinor, a Clinical Psychologist, born without arms and with shortened legs. Abdinor runs Nicky’s Drive, a non-profit organisation which raises funds for car adaptations for people with disabilities in South Africa.

She currently drives a specially adapted vehicle that was developed in the UK and features joystick steering technology. The vehicle was donated to her in 2001.

While this technology has been widely available abroad, it is unavailable in South Africa due to the high costs associated with it.

A specialised racing car that was developed by CPUT and the Disabled People Inclusion Institute will also be showcased at the event. The racing car will be driven and maintained by disabled persons.

*The Disability Drive Expo will take place in the Major Sports Hall on the Bellville Campus and starts at 8:30am.

Written by CPUT News

Email: news@cput.ac.za