Are you curious as to whether or not the hearing impaired can safely drive? There are common misconceptions that those who can not hear, cannot safely drive. This article will clear up many misconceptions regarding deaf drivers as well as detailing certain laws and regulations.
Can You Have a Driver’s License if Your Deaf?
Yes, lack of or diminished auditory capabilities will not hinder someone’s ability to drive. That being said there are still certain precautions to take. For example, since the drivers can not hear sirens from emergency vehicles there are devices to alert drivers. There are also devices to alert drivers if there is a horn and to proceed carefully.
Deaf Driving Laws
Here is a sample of the deaf driving laws in a few states:
- Florida -“Deafness alone will not prevent a person from being issued a driver license.”
- California -“Drivers that are deaf or hard of hearing can adjust their driver safety habits by relying more on their seeing sense to compensate for the loss of hearing.”
Hearing Impaired Driving Restrictions
According to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), drivers are required to report significant hearing loss. The DMV then determines whether a “HEARING AID OR FULL-VIEW MIRROR (F) restriction is required on your driver license.”
If your driver license does have the restriction you must use a hearing aid while driving and/or your vehicle must be equipped with full-view mirrors. All the mirrors both inside and outside must meet DMV’s requirements.