Americans love their cars, and data from The National Health Interview Survey- Disability (NHIS-D) and other research suggests that people with disabilities are no exception. Approximately 2 out of 3 Americans with disabilities drive cars. A majority of drivers and passengers with disabilities prefer to use cars rather than public transportation. Americans with disability also prefer cars to para-transit, the shared ride service that was designed to make transportation accessible to people with disabilities.Although the data are not conclusive, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) reports that the preference for cars by people with disabilities is unrelated to other transportation issues, including availability, cost, accessibility or reliability.
People who apply for a driver's license must disclose a disability, but they cannot be refused a driver's license on the basis of their disability.Like all other drivers, people with disabilities receive a driver's license after they demonstrate competence on written and driving tests. If a car is modified for a driver with disability, the modifications must be appropriate for the car and for the driver's disability status. All modifications must be compliant with law, including environmental laws.Driving laws are enforced on the federal level by the Highway Traffic Safety Administration and enforced on the state level by the Department of Motor Vehicles.
In response to the American's with Disabilities Act (ADA), reserved parking spaces are available in many places for people with disabilities.Qualifications for these spaces vary between states. In general, medical documentation of temporary or permanent disability is required. An individual with temporary disability usually receives a placard, while license plates are available to people with permanent disability. Medical conditions that are associated with disability include impairments in sight and hearing, loss of one or more limbs, advanced arthritis, and severe heart, lung, neurological, and orthopedic diseases. The use of portable oxygen is usually considered evidence of disability.
Completed applications for parking placards and license plates must be submitted to the appropriate authority. Offices of city, town or village government issue parking permits for people with temporary disability. Your state's Department of Motor Vehicles issues licenses for people with permanent disability. In order to obtain a license for reserved parking, a car must be registered in the name of the person with disability.Placards and licenses can only be used for reserved parking when a person with disability uses a car as a driver or passenger.
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