GOLD STANDARD: Casey Ford and Michelle Prange’s purpose-built house, suitable for people of all abilities, is in the running for a Masters Builders award.
GOLD STANDARD: Casey Ford and Michelle Prange’s purpose-built house, suitable for people of all abilities, is in the running for a Masters Builders award. CONTRIBUTED

Home is a beautiful outcome after terrible crash

AFTER a motocross crash Bundaberg builder Casey Ford was left with multiple fractures and severe body trauma and spent months in rehabilitation.

Mr Ford said he couldn't return home after the crash as it was difficult to get around in the wheelchair he had been bound to.

The situation inspired the builder and his partner to look at designing a house that was accessible for those not only in a wheelchair but a home which is suitable to live a lifetime in.

"The concept was to build a high-end home with a beautiful finish that was accessible without jeopardising the style and look of it," Mr Ford said.

The house in Kepnock, built by Mr Ford's company Casey Ford Constructions, has been entered in the Master Builders Burnett Wide Bay Housing and Construction Awards in the individual home ($501,000-$600,000) category.

The 33-year-old's partner, Michelle Prange, an occupational therapist, insisted it met Liveable Housing Australia's guidelines - which aim to make dwellings safer, more comfortable and easier to access for people of all ages and abilities.

The home has been rated at a gold standard.

Ms Prange said Mr Ford was injured severely in the 2012 crash and had to spent time in a wheelchair which meant everyday routines like showering were difficult.

"When he finally came home from rehabilitation the wheelchair couldn't fit in the shower so we showered him over the (drain) in the bathroom," Ms Prange said.

"This is when we realised we would design and build a home to suit a lifespan.

"The house has features like wider hallways, wider toilets and showers, as well as reinforced walls and grab rails."

She said the house also had no steps and could accommodate people with any type of disability.

"It would benefit people in a wheelchair or even a high-level quadriplegic.

"It's a liveable housing design so to the everyday person it looks like any other home."

Award winners will be announced at a dinner at Hervey Bay's Beach House Hotel on July 31.

HOUSE PROUD: Casey Ford and Michelle Prange.
HOUSE PROUD: Casey Ford and Michelle Prange.


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