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Jamie’s Journey to get Back Behind the Wheel

27 April 2021

Jamie started his assistive technology journey with Indigo in 2015, seeking assistance for seating, pressure care, mobility, self-care aids in the home, and home modifications, after an accident in 2003 left him with a C5 spinal cord injury.

A year later Jamie met Occupational Therapy (OT) Driver Assessor Simone.

A general conversation about Jamie’s recreational off-road motorbike (a vehicle he self-purchased and modified with friends; allowing him to return to his pre-injury enjoyment of motorbike riding and 4 x wheel driving), and Simone’s experience with OT Driver Assessment kicked in and she raised the potential option of Jamie returning to on-road driving.

Jamie had not ever thought this was a possibility. Returning to on-road driving would not only support his independence, it would also mean Jamie had community access and could look at expanding his online motorbike parts and advice business. Simone and Jamie started to explore possibilities, with Simone arranging a visit with one of the modifiers, Freedom Motors to discuss and view car modification options that could make it possible.

Once Jamie saw how a van could be modified, he started to really believe returning to on-road driving could become a reality, so he and Simone proceeded with seeking quotes for a complex vehicle assessment.

Around this time, Indigo (then Independent Living Centre) was also facilitating a high-level assessment vehicle to be transported to Perth, giving our West Australian customers access to determine their capacity to return to driving. Prior to this, customers had to travel to the Eastern States for this type of assessment, at a substantial cost.

The timing was perfect for Jamie!

He received NDIS support for his high-level driving assessment, then proceeded to fund driving lessons and passed his practical driving assessment with the Department of Transport. Friends used crowdfunding to help Jamie in purchasing his  vehicle.

Almost two years later, and Jamie is on the road and managing his independence with reduced reliance on support workers for transport and a much-improved confidence to follow and progress his life goals.

For more information on our range of driving assessment and rehabilitation services, please contact our friendly team on (08) 9381 0600 or visit the Driving Services page.