FL: Q'Straint Introduces Fully Automatic Wheelchair Securement System

Q’Straint has announced the introduction of Quantum, the transportation industry’s first fully automatic rear-facing wheelchair securement station designed for any bus or rail car.

The revolutionary new product was developed by combining transportation insight, intelligent technology and a pioneering new approach to securement. After boarding a bus or rail car, Quantum allows wheelchair and scooter passengers to position their chair and by simply pushing a button to secure themselves in a stable and safe rear-facing position without driver assistance. The process takes under 25 seconds.

“In addition to ensuring the highest level of passenger safety, keeping buses on schedule and preventing tip-overs, Quantum provides a more respectful experience to the process of wheelchair securement,” said Bob Joseph, Q’Straint vice president of business development. “Now safe securement and release is fully automated.”

In the past, drivers would take additional time to affix straps to harness the chair, potentially invading the passenger’s personal space. With Quantum, all passengers are treated equally. Wheelchair users have the freedom to board the vehicle and automatically secure their mobility device without assistance. With the push of a button, Quantum’s arms move into position and secure wheelchairs and scooters by capturing the wheels – and then continually adjusts grip as needed throughout the journey.

“One of our goals is ensuring the integration of people with disabilities into society -- and transportation is a key enabler,” said Jim Franklin, an advocate with the Action Committee of People with disAbilities. “No one enjoys being singled out when a driver must come back and secure a wheelchair because it always takes time. People with disabilities just want to get on the bus and go.”

When the vehicle is safely stopped, the Quantum unit is ready for the wheelchair passenger. Once the passenger’s wheelchair is centered against the backrest, the press of a button engages the automatic locking sequence. Integration with existing vehicle electrical and interlock systems prevents accidental release of a secured wheelchair while the vehicle is in motion. Quantum is being introduced after one year of extensive field tests in severe driving conditions.

Operators will benefit with reduced dwell time when securing passengers in mobility devices which will result in more reliable schedules. Quantum puts an end to challenging securement maneuvers that upset passengers and put drivers at risk of personal injury. By safely securing wheelchairs and scooters, Quantum ultimately reduces liability exposure for injuries to mobility passengers as well as to seated or standing commuters who could be injured by unsecured mobility devices.