Mobility-impaired woman enjoys her Segway scooter
- (Only $5,000!)
Published Wednesday, May 7, 2003, in the Menlo Park Almanac
Segwaying through West Menlo
By Andrea Gemmet
Almanac Staff Writer
For West Menlo Park resident Timi Most, going from her house to the
Almanac offices is just a quick glide along the Alameda on her new
Segway Human Transporter.
The distinctive two-wheeled contraption, which sells for slightly
under $5,000 on Amazon.com, isn't just a trendy toy for Ms. Most.
"I have mobility issues," stemming from a serious spinal cord injury
suffered 35 years ago, she says. "I walk really slowly, and I wanted
to be able to go on trails and up to the mountains with my family."
Although she has owned the Segway for less than a month, she's
already used it to participate in hikes in the Stanford Hills and
along the Crystal Springs Reservoir, as well as to take her son to
the Sharon Heights duck pond and to pop over to the Plantation Cafe
for coffee, she says. Even though San Francisco is one of the few
municipalities to ban the Segway from its streets, Ms. Most plans to
ride hers across the Golden Gate Bridge.
"Hopefully I won't get arrested," she jokes.
A self-balancing device that relies on computers and gyroscopic
sensors to stay upright, the Segway responds to slight changes in
body position to go forward, backwards and stop. Twisting the grip
on the handlebar turns the Segway, which can execute a complete, 360-
degree revolution in place. Ms. Most attended a company-sponsored
training session, which she said was helpful but not really
"It's really intuitive," she says.
To prove her point, she offered rides to a half-dozen Almanac
staffers, all of whom got the hang of riding the Segway in a minute
Ms. Most says she's a firm believer in the environmental benefits of
the Segway, as well. The Segway's battery uses only about 10 cents
worth of electricity to recharge, which lasts for about 15 miles,
depending on the terrain, she says. Using a Segway instead of a car
can reduce pollution from gas emissions, she says.
Plus, it's just plain fun. Her two sons love it, she says, and her
10-year-old is especially adept.
"He flies around like Harry Potter," Ms. Most says.
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