I spent sometime yesterday looking at various devices used to help Deaf and Hard of Hearing drivers. I also spent some time searching (on my phone) for apps that might be out there to help the above mentioned drivers know when an Emergency Vehicle is (or possibly is) in the area. Unfortunately my search for the latter didn’t produce any results (surprising as I was sure I would find something.
So why the interest in such devices and (phone) apps?? As a partly Hard of Hearing person myself I have (inadvertently) found myself in situations where I haven’t realized that an Emergency Vehicle was approaching till they were practically right on top of me. Thankfully I have always managed to get out of there way without (hopefully) hindering their ability to get to where they need to go. Many things can be a factor in hearing approaching sirens. Whether or not I have the windows rolled up, or the AC blowing, the playing of music (though I do try to keep it down). Thankfully in my case my hearing loss is only minimal and I usually have ample warning to get out of the way (just not as much as I might like)… But how about for those whose hearing loss is more severe?
Another, bigger issue (for me), is when I hear sirens but can’t ascertain where the siren is coming from. Are they behind me? In front of me? On a Cross Street? Which One? Are they even in my immediate area? Because of my hearing loss my sense of directional hearing is terrible. Often times when in the store with my husband he will be calling my name and I’ll be looking all over the place trying to determine where exactly he’s at when I can’t see him. It’s one thing to deal with the frustration of looking like I’m spinning in circles trying to figure just exactly where my husband is at in a store… It’s quite another when your driving and hear sirens nearby (assuming that I hear them in the first place) and having no idea where they are at.
I’ll have to keep my eyes open for any apps available that would indicate when an Emergency Vehicle is not only in the immediate area but when they are likely approaching from behind or a side street… In the meantime, if any of you know anything please let me know.