"I thought it was the end of my life."

It is the word of a person who has difficulty walking after getting older after returning his license.

I had no idea that I was so mentally depressed because I couldn't move on my own.

How to secure a means of transportation beyond the return of the license.

It was an important issue to live happily in life.

(Yu Suzuki, Network News Department)

After returning the license

The trigger for the interview was the enforcement of the revised Road Traffic Law on May 13.

Drivers over the age of 75 who have a certain history of violations are required to actually drive a car and check their skills when renewing their license.

I decided to talk to Sumio Tsukamoto (84) from Nara City to hear the feelings of the person who returned the license.

Mr. Tsukamoto has been a doctor for over 50 years.

From 1981 he was sent to Saudi Arabia as a foreign medical officer and became the first Japanese to obtain a local medical license.

He has been in Saudi Arabia for seven years in his 40s and 50s, treating multinational patients every day.

However, because I got used to driving overseas, when I drive in Japan after returning to Japan, the driving lane is different, and the traffic rules for turning right and left are different, so I can not restore his feeling. rice field.

He returned his license in his 60s because he felt dangerous in his driving.

"I was afraid to drive even if I didn't think I would have an accident. I just had my license renewed and I returned it at that time."

Sudden illness Traveled to 500 meters

For a while after I returned my driver's license, my legs were firm, so I walked to the bus stop and train station and went to my favorite place.

And last year, he retired from the hospital in Nara, where he worked for many years, at the age of 83 and moved to a hospital in Kyoto.

In April of last year after retirement, I had a backache and had an operation.

He was supposed to live while rehabilitating, but he was still fine and out.

It was his heart illness that drove him.

He became ill in February, and when he went to his previous place of employment, his heart wasn't working well and he was diagnosed with acute heart failure.

He had to make a request to retire from the hospital in Kyoto, where he was working, saying, "I can't work with this."

Rehabilitation of his lower back was not possible due to the strain on his heart.

Wheelchairs cannot be used because turning the tires by hand puts a strain on the heart.

He was limited to walking 500 meters for about 10 minutes.

I have already let go of my car.

I want to go shopping, I want to eat rice, I want to go to a convenience store.

He said he couldn't go out for a while and stayed at home for a long time.

"I was really shocked. I thought it was the end of my life. It was a feeling that the range of activities became narrower and there was no hope for the future."

Desperately searched and arrived

I desperately wondered how I could move.

Meanwhile, she remembers reading an article on wheelchair-shaped electric mobility in the newspaper.

But I couldn't remember the name of the product, so I searched all over the Internet with keywords such as "wheelchair" and "electric".

After looking for it, I finally arrived.

I found out that they are selling at a car dealer near my home.

I immediately contacted him by phone.

At the dealership, there were two wheelchair-shaped electric mobility units next to the car.

When I actually got on it, I felt it was very well made and decided to buy it immediately.

"I thought that I could go to the station on my own with my heart now. It's not a burden because I'm sitting. I tilt the stick attached to my armrest to operate it, but when I release my hand, the brakes are applied naturally and it's easier to drive."

Return to your favorite world

The maximum speed is about 6 kilometers per hour, and you don't need a license.

Since it is treated the same as a pedestrian, it will move on the sidewalk.

Now that I have it, I don't have to worry about my heart rate and move.

It was especially easy to move uphill.

It is also foldable, so you can bring it to a train or taxi.

I also felt the merit of being able to use it even where I moved.

On the 10th of this month, Mr. Tsukamoto used a car and electric mobility to visit the library, which is about a kilometer away from his home, for the first time.

While driving, go up the slope and enter the library.

I immediately went to the "fishing" corner, which I had been hobbyizing since I was a student.

"Nostalgic Sabiki fishing. Oh, it looks like it's fun to make a gimmick."

I returned to my favorite world through the book, and happy feelings leaked from my mouth one after another.

"I'll borrow it, read it, and go back. I'm looking forward to it. I'm rejuvenating. Until now, I've only walked around my house."

Regained purpose of life

Mr. Tsukamoto regained his vitality just because he

could move .

And about a week after he went to the library, he went further in his life.

On the morning of May 18, Mr. Tsukamoto went to the only clinic in the town.

I walked into the building from the entrance and headed for the examination room.

There was a lab coat wrapped in a transparent bag on the desk.

Mr. Tsukamoto took out his lab coat from the bag and put it on quickly.

A patient enters the examination room.

Mr. Tsukamoto examines the patient.

Touch her hand, check her condition, and give an injection to the patient's shoulder.

He listened to the patient's worries and answered politely and clearly one by one.

Mr. Tsukamoto was also returning as a doctor.

"This is what makes me want to live. The patients I have been working with since I used to work at the hospital. I am happy."

Mr. Tsukamoto attended conferences held all over the country using electric mobility. I talked about my wishes.

"As I get older, I lose my strength and my range of activities becomes narrower. But with this, I think that I can go out and gradually expand the range I can go to. I don't know if I can go to science councils or academic societies, but I want to do it. I am. "

Rapid increase in handling at car dealers

Mr. Tsukamoto purchased electric mobility at a car dealer.

According to the manufacturer, the number of dealers handled was about 100 stores nationwide at the end of February last year, but as of the end of February, it has increased to more than 700 stores.

Hiroyuki Koike, the manager of the Nara Nissan Motor Tomigaoka store, explained that the relationship had been broken when the user returned the license, but it is an advantage to be able to show new options.

Safety seminars for people riding electric mobility are also being held in various places.

(Hiroyuki Koike, Manager, Tomigaoka Store, Nara Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.)

"I've heard that my son will give a present to my father and mother in their 70s. Until now, I had only to dispose of my car after returning my license. But now we can make new proposals. "

You can move it just

Mr. Tsukamoto is now planning to go fishing as a hobby.

He was surprised that his life would change so much just by getting a means of transportation.

As the accident of the elderly becomes an issue, I think that the movement to return the license will be further advanced because of anxiety about driving.

Some people can walk well for a long time, while others can't.

Being able to move.

I realized that it was very important in my life.