I tried the Segfree today, where I live in London, in a lift, down a corridor, up and down a ramp, over sleeping policeman and through doors.
In the world that I now begrudgingly inhabit, that of the wheelchair, this machine is quite incredible in the freedom that it opens up, the speed I could go at and distance that I could travel to…meaning a whole new world of possibilities.
I’ve been shocked and saddened by the blatant profiteering of companies that know they can get away with charging preposterous amounts for quite basic things that only disabled people need, such things as wheelchairs. I was recently quoted £2,200 for 3 cushions ( the padded bit that I sit on without even being able to feel the ‘benefit’ ).
The chairs for which these were for were 25 year old design chairs that had a piston underneath that changes the chair from sitting to standing. Just one of these crap old heavyweight units costs NINE THOUSAND POUNDS.
The Segfree costs less than this yet is a relative miracle of modern engineering. It’s smaller than my wheelchair, goes along at up to 13.5 mph, turns on a sixpence, self balances on 2 wheels, doesn’t tip over and has a range of 26 miles on one battery charge.
The people that make it make a relatively small margin ( I know what that’s like – I work for Specsavers, that make tiny amounts ‘ per unit’ so rely on volume ) I do hope that Segfree get the volume they deserve and the owners do well ultimately ( they’ll probably drop the price tho )
I was quoted £4,600 for a battery operated little electric wheel ( no bigger than a frisbee ) a few weeks ago.. that fixes underneath my wheelchair.. What an absolute scandal.
What’s even more sad is that all too often the owners of these companies are disabled themselves … Shame on them.
Segfree is a breath of fresh air.