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UAE student develops unique vehicle for disabled

Abu Dhabi

10-March-2014

An architectural engineering student in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has developed a unique vehicle that would help disabled people to drive with the help of their feet on the vehicle's steering wheel which uses an air pressure pump in place of the hydraulic mechanism that most cars use.

The foot-controlled vehicle built by Reem Al Marzouqui, a 23-year-old Emirati architectural engineering student, can enable people with arm and upper torso disabilities to drive a car with relative ease.

"My course required that I find out how everyday items had been modified to help people with special needs, but I misunderstood this and thought I had to make the modifications myself," she told the Gulf News daily.

"When I took it to my professor, he said he could not give me a grade because I had not understood his instructions. But he said it was a 'beautiful mistake' that I should try to make available for people who might need it," Reem said.

"I have already developed a prototype, and would love it if anyone could show me how I can make this development marketable. It would really help people with disabilities in both arms, because most people that I have come across in such a condition do not even imagine that they can drive, and I want to make it possible for them," she said.

According to her, the steering faces more surface friction, but it makes it easier to control when using one's feet.

“The prototype can reach speeds of up to 120 kilometres per hour," the young inventor explained. --IANS/ WAM