New cane to aid visually impaired


A new walking cane with enhanced range could improve the lives of visually impaired Queenslanders.

And it’s here just in time for White Cane Day.

Emilie Gramenz reports.

TRANSCRIPT

The white cane has been around since 1921, when a man in the UK painted his walking stick to be more visible to motorists.

Today’s version is still white, but it comes with a range of other features.

Bashir Ebrahim, Guide Dogs Qld: “Ultra-sound technology, tactile indicator, and the closer you get to an object, the faster the vibration or the higher the frequency. So you can use it to detect obstacles and move around them, or locate features in your environment.”

The new Ultra-Cane was on display to potential users today.

Haroon Probst, Guide Dogs Qld: “Not only is it a cane in its normal sense, for finding out if you’ve got freedom on the ground, it’ll tell me there’s an overhanging branch that’s about to take out my nose or something like that.”

Today, the cane went for a test drive down a special route.

This may look like a path of decorative tiles, but it’s actually the Braille Trail , which helps those with visual impairement navigate the Queen Street Mall.

But even those with perfect vision can overlook the path.

Vox 1: “So people don’t slip in the rain?”

Vox 2: “But the average person mightn’t know. It’s certainly not publicised in the community itself and maybe it should be.”

Emilie Gramenz, QUT News.