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Wheelchair Testing standards were developed to insure the safety and quality of both manual and powered mobility devices.
Standards developement takes place on a national level as well as an international level. In the United States, there is the RESNA group of standards. The ISO standards are the international level of standards available. These standards are reviewed at regular intervals to adjust for newer technologies as well as changes in safety and reliability requirements.

Tests for Manual Chairs

RESNA WC-01 or ISO 7176-01 Static Stability
Determines stability on a slope in forward, rearward and side facing positions. The chair is placed on a platform that can be inclined. A test dummy is placed in the chair. The ramp is gradually raised until the chair becomes unstable. The angle at which instability occurs is recorded. The test is performed with the chair facing uphill, downhill and sideways.

RESNA WC-05 or ISO 7176-05 Dimensions, Mass and Turning Space
Determines overall and folded dimensions of chair, mass of chair, and the distance needed to make a complete 180-degree turnaround.

RESNA WC-07 or ISO 7176-07 Seating Dimension
A list of 27 different dimensions are measured and recorded. Dimensions are taken with a RLG (Reference Loader Gage) in the seat. The RLG has surfaces that allow consistent measurements to be taken.

RESNA WC-08 or ISO 7176-08 Static, Impact, and Fatigue Strength Testing
Static - Tests all structural parts for strength (Pass/Fail Criteria). Parts of the wheelchair are subjected to loads from pneumatic cylinders.

Impact – Tests structure for impact resistance (Pass/Fail Criteria). Parts of the wheelchair are subjected to impacts from a weighted pendulum.

Fatigue –The double drum is a set of rollers that the wheelchair rides on for an extended period of time. There are slats on the drums that simulate pavement irregularities. The Curb drop simulates the wheelchair descending a curb. Both of these tests are conducted with a test dummy in the chair.
RESNA WC-15 or ISO 7176-15 Information Disclosure, Documentation, and Labeling
Determines if all necessary safety and manufacturer’s labels appear on the chair

Aditional Tests for Powered Wheelchairs

RESNA WC-02 or ISO 7176-02 Dynamic Stability
This set of tests determines the ability of the chair to remain stable while moving. Testing is conducted on various slopes to determine stability while starting, stopping and turning.
RESNA WC-03 or ISO 7176-03 Effectiveness of Brakes
Determines the ability of the brakes to hold on a slope. The chair is placed on a platform that can be inclined. A test dummy is placed in the chair. The platform is inclined until the wheels begin to slide on the surface, or the chair becomes unstable. The angle at which the slip occurs is recorded. 
RESNA WC-04 or ISO 7176-04 Determination of Energy Consumption of electric Wheelchairs and Scooters- Theoretical Range
This test determines a theoretical range for the battery set. The batteries are charged and a meter is attached to the battery. This meter reads battery capacity. The tested device is driven on a test track in a clockwise direction for 10 laps and then a counterclockwise direction for ten laps. The remaining battery charge is determined and the difference is calculated. The theoretical range based on the listed capacity of the battery is then determined.
RESNA WC-06 or ISO 7176-06 Determination of Maximum Speed, Acceleration and Retardation of Electric Wheelchairs
In this test the unit runs through a speed trap to determine the maximum speed of the unit. Accelerometers are used to determine the maximum retardation  of the unit. Retardation is the ability of the chair to use the motors as dynamic brakes in emergency stop situations by commanding the joystick in the opposite direction of travel.

RESNA WC-09 or ISO 7176-09 Climatic Tests for Electric Wheelchairs
This test determines the ability of the power and control systems to operate properly in adverse conditions of heat and cold. The tested device is subjected to extremes of heat and cold and then operated on a test track to determine any unsatisfactory behavior.

RESNA WC-10 or ISO 7176-10 Determination of Obstacle Climbing
Tests the chair for its ability to climb obstacles in both a forward and rearward direction. The chair is subjected to obstacles of increasing height until a maximum height is attained.

RESNA WC-14 or ISO 7176-14 Power and Control Systems for Electric Wheelchairs
Tests all electrical systems including the battery and charger for safety and reliability. This includes all connectors, wiring labels, operating control hardware and any other electrical system on the chair.


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