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3. Psychological & Physiological

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22. The Ears and Hearing

Hearing is more important for safe driving than many people realize. Your hearing can warn you of dangers, such as the presence of vehicles in your blind spots, it allows you to respond to someone honking their horn, emergency vehicle sirens, and bells at railroad crossings, and can alert you to impending engine or other mechanical failure.

A hearing impairment (partial deafness) is the inability to hear low to medium (softer) decibel sounds, or sounds of certain frequencies.

Deafness is the inability to hear even the loudest of sounds.

A person can compensate for a hearing impairment and improve his or her ability to drive safely by seeing a doctor and having a hearing aid prescribed to amplify sounds. A person with a hearing impairment or total deafness can also compensate by learning to rely more on vision, such as increasing the degree to which they visually scan their environment.

Auditory acuity deteriorates with age. It is important to have your hearing checked periodically by a doctor because often changes in hearing occur so slowly that people do not notice them.

To hear properly while driving a vehicle you should:

  • keep the volume of your vehicle's audio system low, and
  • keep at least one window open so you can better hear outside noises
  • Except for drivers of certain types of special equipment and law enforcement, a person must not wear a headset or earplugs that cover both ears while driving.


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    Lesson Summary


      

    Lesson 3 Quiz


    You will now answer 5 questions to test what you learned during this lesson. You must answer all questions correctly to receive completion credit for this lesson. You may answer the questions as many times as necessary to get them right.

    You should review the lesson material if you don't do well on the quiz.

    1. When listening to your car radio, or other audio device:


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    2. The "P" in the SIPDE process stands for:


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    3. A vehicles' "blind spots" are:


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    4. Your "Field of Vision" is:


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    5. The colorless, odorless and poisonous gas from the exhaust is called:


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