Sudden Sensorial Hearing Loss

Topic 8289 | Page 1

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Patrick 's Comment
member avatar

I would like to know if there are any drivers out there who have Sudden Sensorial Hearing Loss (SSHL) which is sudden loss of hearing in just one ear, and who are still driving despite this sudden loss of hearing. You can still hear out of the one ear, but your hearing is about half of what it was when you took your physical.

Jeff L.'s Comment
member avatar

I would like to know if there are any drivers out there who have Sudden Sensorial Hearing Loss (SSHL) which is sudden loss of hearing in just one ear, and who are still driving despite this sudden loss of hearing. You can still hear out of the one ear, but your hearing is about half of what it was when you took your physical.

I noticed a couple instructors had hearing devices, I wonder if it was occupational. I have worked manufacturing with plugs before. Just a thought.

Pv's Comment
member avatar

I had a couple of truckers that came to me for services that either gradually lost hearing in 1 or both ears or had a sudden onset of lost. Barring any medical issues that could serve as the primary cause (Meniere's, etc.), hearing loss can happen gradually or suddenly and is usually caused by long term exposure to loud noises.

Yes, you can still drive with a hearing loss. FMCSA now issues hearing exemptions that allows you to forego the "forced whisper" test and you meet the other physical requirements. The hearing exemptions are renewable up to every 2 years. If you have any questions about the hearing exemption, contact me any time.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Phil C.'s Comment
member avatar

PV you realize you are bumping year old posts right?

Pv's Comment
member avatar

PV you realize you are bumping year old posts right?

Hello,

Yes I am fully aware that I'm bumping year old posts. I'm trying to get the information out there about the hearing exemption so that people don't needlessly lose their jobs.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Pv, are you aware that we have an entire section in our trucking Wiki devoted to information concerning the exemptions?

Click here for easy access.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Pv's Comment
member avatar

Hello Old School,

Yes, I am aware that the information is posted on the WIki. Kudos for that as most places don't even list the hearing exemption as an option. However, if you search the website, the first item found is the DOT hearing and ear test with a link to the available exemption, which is not clear that there indeed is a hearing exemption in place. The rest of the items found were various threads relating to people commenting about hearing loss but no mention of the hearing exemption itself.

Comparing how many threads are made regarding hearing loss and the small amount of visual space given to the hearing exemption, it's easy to see that the hearing exemption information is not easily found. It doesn't help that the hearing exemption is not well known throughout the trucking industry (and most DOT physicians/ state DOT offices as well as employers). So I'm constantly fielding inquiries and trying to get the information out there. I've spent the past 9 months with my state DOT office to accept the hearing exemption and not cause drivers needless delays because they were not sure about how to process the paperwork issued by FMCSA.

I advise any driver with a hearing loss that expresses concerns about passing the "forced whisper" test to go ahead and apply for the hearing exemption "just in case" so that they don't experience any delays and lose their medical card which prevents them from driving until they have the paperwork in place. It generally takes anywhere from 6-12 months for a hearing exemption request to be reviewed and issued if approved. So it's not a good idea to wait until the proverbial hearing test to start exploring the hearing exemption.

Thank you for all that you do on this forum. I hope to contribute further to this forum in a way that benefits all users.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
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