Katharine J. Lee

On Living with a Power Chair
– Excerpted from An Electronic Silent Spring

At 38, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). Call it an electrical problem: there’s miscommunication between my brain and the rest of my body. At 57, I got a power wheelchair. It frees me to use my stamina for things other than rock-bottom essentials. It also means that I sit on two batteries every day and charge them several nights each week. I sense that the digital electronics, the batteries and their recharging are potentially harmful to me. But even with the risks involved, the power chair gives me so many benefits that I can’t imagine living without it.

Is there a way to shield myself from the batteries? Would filters make my electrical system safer while the batteries charge? Where could I go for information about this?