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Man creates the world’s first electrical wheelchair

Shared by Ana Duarte on 2019-08-05 12:38

About the solution

John Counsell, a World War II survivor, was shot through the back. This made him become a paraplegic. He was satisfied with the manual wheelchairs, but then he realised that quadriplegics would benefit from something more sophisticated.

As a patient and advocate for Canada’s veterans, he requested the National Research Council and George Klein to build a new kind of wheelchair.

George accepted the challenge and ended up considering it the most rewarding project of his career.

He came up with a unique package of technologies including the joystick, tighter turning systems and separate wheel drives that are still features of electric wheelchairs nowadays.

Canadian veterans were provided with these wheelchairs and then there was made an international effort was made to engage manufacturers. This culminated in the formal transfer of the prototype chair to the United States Ambassador to Canada and the head of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs with patent-free rights to encourage production in the U.S.

This led to the major wheelchair manufacturing companies had embraced the technology and made it available to disabled civilians in mass.

Adapted from: https://bit.ly/2OGLcJo

This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

About the author

George Klein, born in Canada, in 1904, was an engineer and inventor. He developed the world’s first electrical wheelchair, in the 50s. He did it after a paraplegic man asked him to create this device.

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