Struggling at the fuel station
Anyone with a disability knows the struggle of going to the fuel station to top on on petrol or diesel. Trying to fuel up independently can be a difficult task and asking for help at the station takes ages, taking a large chunk of your time. Sometimes its difficult to ask for help at a station, especially if the driver has to wage their arms to get help. Unfortunately, not everyone can lift there arms to get attention of staff in the kiosk to come out and help. What if there was one simplistic solution for fuelling up? That’s where fuelService comes in handy at your fuel station.
What is fuelService?
fuelService is an app designed to make going to a fuelling station a lot easier. The aim is to allow a disabled driver to notify a station that they require help when they arrive. All of these features aim to make the experience of going to the garage a lot easier.
I am personally not able to fuel up my car myself. Whenever I’ve gone to the garage, I’ve always relied on someone else to go with me. But what if I went to the station and tried to get help from someone in the kiosk? Well I have once but the embarrassment you need to get through to ask for help isn’t my cup of tea.
On my first use, I was able to notify the station before I left to the station and on arrival input my pump number to ask for help. After around 3-5 minutes (depending how busy the garage is) a member of staff will come out to help you. Staff members on this visit were very polite and afterwards I was able to give them a rating based on my experience. Every time you select a station and notify the station, you have a set amount of time to get there but don’t worry, you can always do it once you arrive (if you are driving yourself).
No more embarrassment
Instantly through the creation of the app, you remove a lot of the embarrassment of going to the fuel station and waving your arms around like a lunatic. Most of the time you want to ask for help in the most discreet way as possible, rather than draw attention to yourself. Even fuelService themselves agree with how embarrassing this can be on their website.
“Filling up the car is one of the biggest challenges for disabled drivers. But its also a challenge for petrol stations to help, sometimes they have people available, but sometimes they are single manned and can’t help for security reasons.
For the disabled driver they don’t know which station can help, which can mean driving from station to station to find one that can help.
But when they get to the station its hard to get the attention of the petrol station staff. Beeping the horn and holding up your disabled card is embarrassing.
Worse still, if the petrol station can’t help because they are single manned they can’t even come out to say they can’t help.“ – fuelService
The one key benefit of fuelService is the element of independance at the fuel station. Many disabled people do things themselves – they go to work, attend events and visit friends or relatives in their day to day lives. Relying on others to fuel up is not a preferred option. Through creating this option to disabled drivers, it empowers them to be independant. Whether it gives people like me that small bit of additional freedom and independance, it’s a great feeling to have it.
Not enough apps
One issue with this app is the lack of supported garages to choose from. So far, I have only been able to find a few local garages with many of my usual supermarket fuel stations being unavailable. I think that once more supermarkets and local fuel businesses know about fuelService, the more that will be made available on the app. For now if you plan to get the app, you will find a lot of Sainsbury’s that use fuelService in the UK.
Fuel is no more
As for the current direct countries are taking towards eliminating diesal cars off the market, there will likely be less use for this services for fueling up the car. Although, there is still the potential of going towards assisting with electric car charging.
Cannot use it while driving
Due to it being against UK road laws to use your phone while driving and the fact you cannot use it while driving. In addition, the majority disabled drivers with handcontrol adaptions won’t be able to use the app while driving as they require all their hands to drive. One recommendation to resolve this issue is to implement it with Google Assistant or Siri to allow the app to be used via voice command while driving. By doing it this way, many disabled drivers will be able to use the app safely.
Now you have fuelled up, it’s time to get moving. Overall, fuelService is an amazing app that makes using a fuel station way more accessible and easier to use for anyone with accessibility needs. If you want to check out fuelService, you can do so by clicking here. I would recommend this to anyone who requires assistance at the fuel station.
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