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Mobichairs giving those with special needs access to beach this summer

June 17, 2019
Valley Central


South Padre Island is taking steps to make sure everyone has access to the waves this summer with unique chairs for people with special needs.

They are amphibious wheelchairs that not only gives those with special needs access to the beach, but also a chance to get in the water

"It does float in a little bit of water, you know you don't want to go to deep with it,” said Captain Jim Pigg of South Padre Island Fire Dept. Beach Patrol. “But you just get in the chair, push it out to the beach and have a good time."

Starting with six, the Mobichairs made their first debut on the island several years ago.

Since then, they've been able to add more.

"City council approved it and got a partnership with GLO and found the money in the funding to go forward with it and now we have about eight chairs that we're able to utilize,” Pigg said.

While Mobichairs cost about $1,600 a piece, they are of no charge to anyone who needs them.

Pigg said they're used almost daily and although they have capabilities of handling more Mobichairs, it's finding room to store them that becomes an issue.

"We come into the problem of the space and how much space to keep them,” Pigg said. “They're a very large chair so space becomes an issue."

The availability of the Mobichairs are typically on a first come, first serve basis, but here are times where they are reserved based on special circumstances.

In addition, you can use the Mobichairs for as long as you need them.

If you're looking to use a Mobichair, stop by the third floor of the South Padre Island Fire Dept.

You will need to provide your driver's license, where you are staying, your license plate number and phone number.

For more information, call 956-761-3040.

by Jolanie Martinez, CBS 4 News


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