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  #1  
Old 06-14-2001, 02:14 PM
Sultan Kinkari Sultan Kinkari is offline
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Can deaf people obtain a driver's license?
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  #2  
Old 06-14-2001, 02:47 PM
jeel jeel is offline
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Yes
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  #3  
Old 06-14-2001, 03:04 PM
GrizzRich GrizzRich is offline
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Absolutely!
There is no hearing test in any state, so far as I know.
I've got a few deaf friends; they drive. I presume that they're licensed.

FWIW, many deaf use convex rear-view and side mirrors to give them a wider field of vision.
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  #4  
Old 06-14-2001, 03:29 PM
Atreyu Atreyu is offline
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I was born with a severe to profound hearing loss due to my mother having rubella when pregnant with me. I had no trouble getting a driver's license. The only notation made on my driver's license for "restrictions" was to indicate that I wore glasses.

The two things I must do while driving:

(1) I must make more of an effort to be visually aware of what's going on around me, since even with powerful hearing aids I will not have anything close to resembling normal hearing.

(2) I must minimize the amount of conversation I have with others while driving. I simply cannot lip-read safely while driving, for doing that will mean my taking my eyes off the road for an unacceptable length of time. My family has figured this out...except for my mother. She has to be reminded every time she's a passenger in the car with me.
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  #5  
Old 06-14-2001, 06:21 PM
handy handy is offline
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Why of course we can. In my opinion, when we aren't drinking & driving, we are generally better drivers. Cuz aren't holding a phone, listening to the stereo, etc.

One insurance agent wouldn't insure me though. he was sweating pretty much when I talked to him so I got another agent.
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  #6  
Old 06-15-2001, 07:30 AM
Phobos Phobos is offline
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Yes.
My brother is deaf & he got his license with no problem.
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  #7  
Old 06-15-2001, 11:08 AM
handy handy is offline
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Phobos, its been years since I took the test but how do they do the driving part of the test if your brother can't hear the instructor?
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  #8  
Old 06-15-2001, 11:46 PM
evilhanz evilhanz is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by wishbone
Can deaf people obtain a driver's license?
Yes, but it is illegal for a hearing driver to wear headphones. Go figure.
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  #9  
Old 06-16-2001, 12:44 AM
GrizzRich GrizzRich is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by evilhanz
Quote:
Originally posted by wishbone
Can deaf people obtain a driver's license?
Yes, but it is illegal for a hearing driver to wear headphones. Go figure.
Because hearing drivers don't compensate well for the loss of that sense, as far as traffic around them is concerned.
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Old 06-17-2001, 06:13 AM
Broomstick Broomstick is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by evilhanz
Quote:
Originally posted by wishbone
Can deaf people obtain a driver's license?
Yes, but it is illegal for a hearing driver to wear headphones. Go figure.
Two points:

1) A hearing person wearing headphones is getting sensory input unrelated to the task at hand, which may be distracting. A deaf person is not getting sensory input (that's why they're deaf) and is not going to be distracted by the lack of sound.

2) My experience with deaf acquaintances and friends is that they are far more attuned to subtle visual cues. They notice things better than the non-deaf. Also, the deaf kids I knew in high school went to a slightly different driver's ed course, where there was considerable emphasis on checking rear and side mirrors and otherwise using vision to compensate for poor or absent hearing.

One more thing - it's legal for a motorcycle wearer to have a helmet (which blocks sound) or an intercom system. At least in the states I've lived in. Then again, because of the air rush at freeway speeds, a biker isn't going to hear much other than WOOOOOOOOOOOOOSH anyhow.
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  #11  
Old 06-17-2001, 03:07 PM
Piell Piell is offline
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The reason why it is legal for motorcyclists to wear a helmet while driving is because in a crash situation, the person on the motorcycle tends to go flying.
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  #12  
Old 06-17-2001, 04:15 PM
Francesca Francesca is offline
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I'm assuming you're asking about the situation in America, but just to add - yes in Britain too. Both my parents are profoundly deaf and both have car and motorbike licences. Both have been driving for over 30 years and neither of them have ever been the cause of an accident. Having been deaf all their lives, they are quite used to compensating visually for the lack of aural input. It is not required that they state their deafness on their licenses.

As an addendum for a question that often follows the "can they drive?" question - they are as aware of emergency vehicles as any other drivers - the flashing lights are very, very noticeable to someone who is visually aware.

Fran
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  #13  
Old 06-17-2001, 04:22 PM
AETBOND417 AETBOND417 is offline
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I was taught in my driver's ed class that, on average, deaf/hearing impaired drivers have better driving records than hearing folks due to the above-stated reasons (increased alertness, less distraction).
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  #14  
Old 06-17-2001, 04:39 PM
Sylkyn Sylkyn is offline
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Both my brother-in-law and his wife are deaf. They both have licenses. As do all their deaf friends.

So I would say, yes.

They seem to pay better attention to the road than non-hearing people, as well.
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  #15  
Old 06-17-2001, 05:52 PM
evilhanz evilhanz is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by SilkyThreat
They seem to pay better attention to the road than non-hearing people, as well.
[/B]
My apologies if this is seen as a hijack, but since the OP has been answered, I've got some doubts about some of your statements. This applies not only to SilkyThreat, but others who've made the same claim in this thread. Where is the evidence that hearing impaired drivers pay any better attention to the driving environment than hearing drivers? (with or without headphones or other auditory devices) This is not intended to be a snipe. I've heard this claim before but never been given any hard evidence to back it. Please provide some cites to back your claims.
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  #16  
Old 06-17-2001, 05:55 PM
handy handy is offline
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evilhanz, come drive with me, you'll see.
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  #17  
Old 06-17-2001, 06:34 PM
Crunchy Frog Crunchy Frog is offline
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When I worked as an electrician, I worked with 2 deaf people, both of whom had Missouri driver's licenses.

I won't back up Silky's claim though, because although Corey was a good driver, Shannon drove like a maniac and scared the hell out of me.
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  #18  
Old 06-17-2001, 06:47 PM
Francesca Francesca is offline
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I (purposely) didn't say that deaf people are better drivers at all. Both my (deaf) parents are excellent conscientous drivers, but I've been in cars with deaf people who drive like maniacs. I think the point is not that being deaf makes a person a better driver, it's that being deaf does not limit one's driving ability. There have been studies made - there's one quoted here that apparently suggest that deaf drivers are better drivers, but being unable to find a link to the report itself, I remain sceptical of its veracity. My opinion is that there are good deaf drivers and bad deaf drivers and the deafness doesn't have much to do with it.

Fran
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  #19  
Old 06-17-2001, 06:48 PM
Francesca Francesca is offline
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Is "purposely" a word? If it isn't, i meant to say "purposefully". Carry on.
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  #20  
Old 06-17-2001, 06:49 PM
dougie_monty dougie_monty is online now
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We have had a married couple come make repairs and do remodeling in our mobile home. They live a few miles away. Both are skilled carpenters and builders, and both are quite capable drivers. The woman is apparently deaf as a post and cannot speak articulately, but she knows ASL and reads lips--that's how she communicates with her husband and with us. And she does drive.
Quote:
Phobos, its been years since I took the test but how do they do the driving part of the test if your brother can't hear the instructor?
But I never thought of this. I haven't the slightest idea!
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  #21  
Old 06-17-2001, 06:57 PM
Francesca Francesca is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by dougie_monty
.
Quote:
Phobos, its been years since I took the test but how do they do the driving part of the test if your brother can't hear the instructor?
But I never thought of this. I haven't the slightest idea!
Well, from what my parents told me (my mother took her motorbike test about 10 years ago), they simply worked around it. Instead of giving commands as they go, the instructor told my mother what she would do and when she should do it and then they went ahead and did it. In most tests (here in Britain at least) you stop every ten minutes anyway to do a manouvre or to discuss what will happen next - in these discussions an interpreter can be sat in the back seat and give assistance when needed.

It may take a little extra effort but it's easily worked around. My mum passed first time

Fran
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