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Assessments/Older Drivers

Sensory Loss & Driving

dot Deafness
dot Inability to Speak
dot Loss of Sight in One Eye (Monocular Vision)

Deafness

Driving is predominantly a visual activity. A driver with a hearing difficulty generally compensates by making more use of their mirrors and vision. If you have recently lost your hearing, allow plenty of time to adjust. Take this opportunity to travel as a passenger. This will help you in adjusting, to avoid distraction and retrain yourself to this new experience. For anyone that is deaf and is either learning, returning or continuing to drive, you do not need to notify the Licensing Authority.

However, for anyone learning to drive, it is best to contact your preferred driving instructor who will then prepare a driving programme that suits your needs. A specific sign language pertaining to the driving controls, written notes and tailored visual aids/diagrams all assist in communicating. Both instructor and learner should be prepared to interact and provide feedback,  promote good communication and support the teaching and learning process.
For driving instructors, the Irish Deaf Society provide a Deaf Awareness Training (DAT) programme. Visit www.irishdeafsociety.ie

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Inability to Speak

The inability to speak is not a bar from driving. However, it is helpful to have a written card affirming this, should you need to communicate with others, including emergency services etc.
When learning to drive, it is best to contact your preferred driving instructor who will then prepare a driving programme that suits your needs. Establish a specific sign language pertaining to the driving controls, use written notes and tailored visual aids/diagrams to replace speech.

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Loss of Sight in One Eye (Monocular Vision)

For Group 1 categories i.e., motorcycles, cars and tractors, it is allowable to drive, provided the sight in the remaining eye satisfies the prescribed eyesight standards.
If your condition is recent, you must allow time for adjustment.
Before beginning, returning or continuing to drive, you must contact your GP, comply with the Medical Fitness to Drive Guidelines. View/Download RSA ‘Sláinte agus Tiomáint’ >>(PDF format).

For more information, see Driving Courses.

 

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