Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Slip Sliding Away

I need your help. This is the first year that we have had our wheelchair ramp and really needed to use it. It is Ronnie's only access into the house.

Last week, we had our first snow. I was dreading it - not because I don't like snow - I really love snow - but I knew that the ramp was going to be an issue. And sure enough, it was.

So here's where I need the help. What do others of you that have ramps do when the ramps get snowy or icy?

Our ramp is made of wood - decking material - and when it gets icy, it gets really really slippery. When we get even an inch of snow, Ronnie's chair won't plow through it. I know we can use the ice melt crystals, but I do worry about the environmental impact of that. I used ice melt last Winter on my front porch and steps, and it took the paint off!

We do have the non-slip strips of sandpaper like stuff on every third plank going down the ramp, but they just seem to get as icy or as snow covered as the rest of the ramp. Any ideas???

(The picture above is not of our ramp, but our ramp is similar. It's about the same angle of descent, and the non-slip strips are similar.)


Molly said...

We cover our steps with this carpeting/rough material and it works beautifully. I'll ask my dad what the material is.

Queenbuv3 said...

Before it snows maybe you could cover it with tarps and all you would have to do after is dump the tarps or slide them off.

mommy~dearest said...

Can't believe I'm saying this...screw the environment and use the ice melt. :)

kiikialoha said...

I was going to suggest teh same thing as Queenbuv3 tarps, ya put down and leave them down all the time then, when you want to go out you pick one end up and roll them over the side or get teh boys to lift it up and toss it

Anonymous said...

The potential downside of the tarp approach is that, once you get a lot of snow accumulation on it, it might not be so easy to pick up or slide off. Not a problem for a light snow fall, but if a blizzard hits you might need to be prepared to periodically get the snow off as the snow is falling. But I guess if you have a chance to try it a few times with light snow fall, you can get a sense for what adaptations you might need for more severe snow storms.