Driving And Blindness


Driving And Blindness

     “Meet you guys there. Got to run by the copiers.” Albert turned around to address his co-workers, surreptitiously slipping his 10-power magnifier back into his pocket.

     His pal yelled back, “Don’t get wet! And remember this guy is a stickler for starting on time.”

     “Yeah.” Flipping up the papers he held, “Printed out a map.” Said Albert, memory flashing back on his past weekend’s special trip to scope out this new address he’d need to find for today’s meeting. There was no way he could drive and read directions, too! To read a street sign, he’d have to stop below it to see it. And to read an address, he’d have to whip out his monocular.

     In the car, Albert retrieved his special driving lens cap from the console and gently but firmly pressed it on the already protruding telescoping lens molded into the upper half of the right lens of his glasses. Though both eyes tested the same, to him the right one responded better to distance magnification. One eye to peek off into the distance was all that was required for getting a restricted license, allowing driving only during daylight hours and no interstate. Normally without the booster lens, the correction in the telescope helped him to see the computer screen and the pages of a book at what most people would consider a normal distance. Otherwise with best correction he was right at 20 over 200, legal blindness. The pocket magnifier was for finer print, like what can be found on some labels or maps.

     “There goes Albert, with those funky glasses of his. You ever ridden with him?” Said one of the two co-workers that were also preparing to make their way to the afternoon’s meeting.

     “No. The couple of times we both had to go to the same meeting, I gave him the option to ride with me and he took it. He seems to do okay but, truth be told, it’d make me nervous.”

     As Albert drove, where some people sang along with the music, he talked to himself. “Go with the flow.” A car ZOOMED around him, cutting in and out of traffic. “Don’t normally go this direction. All main streets to the copiers. Left at the second lighted intersection ahead. First one coming up. Tilt the head down, use the scope, and the status of the light is? Can’t tell, glare. Check the traffic flow, and ah, slowing down, braking.” Stopped, he was the second car back. “Scoping for a sign. Ah, good color contrast and it’s Martin Avenue. Need Brighten Boulevard.” Looking around him, “Car to the right, red, easy to see. Car to the left, whoo, some kind of silver grey, about the same color as the street. Hope those dark rain clouds on the horizon stay there, not cut down on my good light.”

     After the copiers, back on the road, “Okay, Saturday I found a quiet street that will take me through the neighborhoods, through the backdoor as they would say, to the area I need.” The route would allow him to avoid a tunnel on the main street which went under a series of railroad tracks; the lighting change from sunlight to artificial was too much too fast and was to be avoided.

     A few blocks into the residential streets, “THUNDER!” “Oh, that’s close, and oh there goes the sun. Darn. Better slow down some.”

     “BUMP” The car jerked and there was a scream.. “Oh my god, what was that?”


e-mail responses to newmanrl@cox.net

**1. I think there are a lot of times I could drive better than half the people who drive. Being a "high partial", as I've learned the terminology, and possibly no longer the legal definition of blind, due to the last operation in my right eye, yes, I believe I could do pretty good. Only thing is that sometimes I cannot tell the color of the signals, can't read street signs till I'm real close, have almost no sight in my left eye and have lost some peripheral vision in my right eye. I would have to judge things by other traffic, and by landmarks. I finally sold my car 2 years ago because it was too tempting. Even if I am no longer quote, legally blind, unquote, when I offered to drive one of my eye doctors to lunch, he said, "no way". Again, what if I were out when it started to rain, or if I ran late and had to drive at night? Of course at night, I can see the traffic signals and usually the lines in the road because of the contrast.

Netagene in Birmingham
"Poor eyes limit your sight; poor vision limits your deeds"

**2. I would love to respond to this thought provoker about blind drivers, although, in stating my response, it is obvious to me that I will be sticking my neck
out, and severely in the minority. I have read all the previous responses, and am very disheartened. There are several issues with not only the story,
but the responses that I take issue with. First, I AM a "blind driver" and have been for 14 years. My vision is 20/200 corrected, but with a monocular
telescopic lens, it is 20/25. This story struck me as someone who, not only is a legally blind driver, but a new driver. Albert obviously just got his
license yesterday. I can remember many of those hypersensitive feelings when I was learning too. Much more credit should be given to adaptability than
is currently being given. If you have this kind of vision all your life, you have grown very accustomed to making necessary adaptations to your reduced
vision, but remember, vision only feels "reduced" if you have a point of comparison. I do not. Many people think that all blind drivers were once sighted,
and are being irresponsible and stubborn to give up the license, the car, etc., but for those of us who have had this vision all our lives, are used to
dealing with it.
Consider this: if some idiot on a cell phone runs over a child in the road because they are too distracted to pay attention, people will say that is awful
and a terrible accident, but if the same scenario happens to me, an ACCIDENT would be blamed on my "poor vision" regardless of the circumstances. Yes,
I have had a few close calls, but what driver hasn't? These responses show a bitterness that frankly surprises me. I have drove cumulatively over 200,000
miles with three different cars in several major cities and interstates, and my license is fully unrestricted. Do I have some difficulties? Yes. I have
adapted. I DO NOT feel like a 'danger to society with a lethal weapon'.
Before we try to paint all legally blind drivers as irresponsible, selfish, thoughtless, (should I go on?), why don't we realize that if a person possesses
the cognicense, maturity and responsibility to operate a motor vehicle properly, then it would stand to reason that that person would also know and understand
if they are being unsafe by trying to do something that they can't or shouldn't do.

Final thoughts: The author of this story clearly has a different perspective, and is attempting, without success, to encapsulate what it is to be a legally
blind driver. Some details are accurate, but most are not, in my personal experience. Also, the overwhelming agreement with the implied sentiment of the
story that anyone with subpar vision should stay off the road is very disheartening to me. I thought I had overcome societal expectations in succeeding
to be a safe, responsible driver when most people thought I could not, but it seems that this was a misguided view among my peers in legal blindness.

Dan Merrick Michigan

**3. Obviously, this guy shouldn't be allowed behind the wheel. it kind of reminds me of my in-laws. They used to drive by committee. My father-in-law drove the car, but he had virtually no peripheral vision in his right eye, so his wife would watch the right side. It was interesting to experience. Fortunately, they never had an accident that I knew of. A few years ago, a 90 year old man struck and killed a teen aged girl who was a pedestrian. Later it was revealed that he was legally blind. We also had an incident where an
86 year old man drove through barriers that closed off a street for a neighborhood farmers market, and several people were injured, some killed. Knowing when to stop driving is difficult. This is especially true if you live in an area where there is nonexistent or poor public transportation.

Andy Baracco ACB-L listserv

**4. I think that an accident is just that. It is something can happen to anyone
This gentleman probably spent more thought on his driving than the average driver. He has to focus more on driving. There are not many that give that much planning to a route. He went to great trouble to have his route on a map, he practiced and previewed it, he considered lighting and adjusted his speed when that was compromised. I have had the sun in my eyes and been temporarily "blinded" by it. In fact, twice a year I have times where I have to drive to work with the sun at an angle just behind all the stoplights. It is just below my sun visor and in order to drive comfortably I have to hold my hand in front of my face to block the sun. This occurs
even with sunglasses. Unfortunately, what will come out of an accident like this is that he was a visually impaired driver and many will believe he should not have been driving. How many other impaired drivers are out there? I have seen many drivers talking on cell phones and driving erratically, weaving as they put on make up while the car is moving, etc. These people also cause accidents; it's just a matter of time.

Deborah Eades

**5. Albert should definitely not be driving! If he has to go through so much to try to drive, he isn't really seeing what he needs to in order to drive safely. It's not only for his safety, but for those around him, as the last sentence of the story shows.

Totally sighted drivers comment, all the time, that, with busier streets and inconsiderate drivers, they need to be constantly looking all around them.
Albert can't do that and is only fooling himself to believe that he should still be driving.

My cousin has diabetes and has recently given up driving. The doctor didn't actually take her license, but said that if he ever saw her on the road, he would. It's been an adjustment, but one she knew she should have made before the doctor told her not to drive. It's frightening to think of drivers, like Albert, on the road, just because they don't want to admit, to themselves, that they can't do it any longer.

Cindy Handel Willow Street, PA

**6. Robert that is stupid! When I became disabled I gave my car away and sent my drivers license back. The thought of causing someone harm made me say no more driving I wouldn't have been able to live with myself if I ran into someone! Later I sold my place moved into town were public transportation was accessible. We must take responsibility for our actions.

Diane Dobson Victoria BC Canada

**7. Sounds to me like he doesn't need to be driving. I have poor distance vision and have never had the desire to drive but most of this is due to the fact
that I do not have the patience to sit and take the test and also I'd need help to understand what it said because of my learning disability. I can only
see 20/20 at 6 inches and my parents won't let me use a white cane, they say "your not blind"! **8. Hi Mike T. from Minnesota here
I'm legally blind , I was able to see better when I was younger, but was never able to see good enough to get a drivers license , just a little history.
Wow , thud and a scream , you would think that would be enough to scare anyone . I guess I can't see how visual aids can allow you to see good enough
to catch everything that goes on around you .
It's probably ok in a very small town where everyone knows you or in the country , but in a bigger town or a large city I would think it would be pretty
hazardous .
I live in a very small town and work in a larger one , and we see a lot of wildlife on the way to work on some mornings , that the person I ride with
sees them . I don't so I would think in a city where there is a lot of things going on it would be even harder , cars , people, and such . I'm sure if
I were driving we would have hit a deer more than once .
I would imagine that most of the time Albert dose just fine ,but just think of the bump . It might be someone's fender witch can always be fixed ,but
what if it were a person . Wow I wouldn't even want to think about that
We never want to see anyone hurt but that's not the only problem here just think of the legal aspect . There is always someone wanting to sue you
and there's always a lawyer ready to cash in to
There is enough things to see for a person with normal sight let alone someone with bad vision
Don't get me wrong I would love to drive , it was kind of a crappy deal when I was in high school , all the other guys had cars and I felt left out ,
and I guess for the most part I was , but I would still feel very uncomfortable trying to see where I was going while I was driving ,
and besides that the state wouldn't allow it .
So I guess I don't think a person who is legally blind should be driving . I don't think it's very safe .

Mike T. Minnesota

**8. This kind of person is much too common and in my opinion he is showing total idiocy and too much self centeredness. He should face reality before he kills himself or others because he lacks common sense. He will face reality when he mows over a child or a motorcycle or any number of other possibilities. Too many visually impaired are trying to beat the odds and those of us that are totally blind have no choice in the driving matter and we manage and so can he and not jeopardize the public with his foolishness.

Alan Hagenstein Minot, ND

**9. OH so very scary I am a parent of a blind teen who will soon be 15 who never plans on driving he has told me although his eye doctor says it MIGHT be possible. He is legally blind a lot like this guy in the story. I as a sighted driver with no corrective lenses do feel that you should stop driving when you have trouble seeing the street signs period. Regardless of the situation. I do realize that when a person quits driving they feel as if they loose some independence but it has to be dealt with in a responsible manner.

Karen Blindkid listserv

**10. So, what did Albert hit? It doesn't really matter. What matters is that he didn't see it, whatever it was.
Accidents like this happen hundreds of times each day, across America. It may well be that it could not be avoided even if Albert had perfect eye sight. But we'll never know, because he is driving with impaired vision.
It's a catch 22. Albert's work demands that he move from location to location quickly. But his vision is not adequate for dealing with the complexity of today's traffic maelstrom. And every visual aid he uses to try to compensate for his low vision impacts his overall ability to take in all that is happening around him.
Albert takes the risk because he sees no way out. But he is not just risking his own neck. Albert is placing everyone on the road in jeopardy.
If the accident is serious enough Albert will lose his driver's license, possibly forever. If the accident is not serious Albert will heave a shaky sigh of relief and continue playing Russian Roulette with his automobile until he succeeds in hitting another target.

Carl Jarvis ACB-L listserv

**11. Have seen several people like this and understand the imperative to drive in this culture more than most cultures. However, unlike some, I think one has to consider the safety of others more than the convenience for yourself. Anyone who has to spend that much concentration on the act of driving and reading one's surroundings is not in the position to react quickly to a rapidly changing situation or a sudden new situation which you had not expected. If he could not read the signs easily on the fly if you will then what happens when a road is closed off and you had a warning on a sign you didn't read? How about children or animals running into the street would he actually get a clear view of the situation suddenly to make the right decision. I think he would fail in many sudden and unexpected situations. He might get away with this for a time but I cannot see that he could do this indefinitely. Knowing your limits is as important as knowing your strengths. I do not buy the idea that says you must push yourself in all areas before knowing what your limits are. There are some things such as blindness which makes your limits obvious. For instance, no matter how hard you try you will not read print. That is, of course, that you are blind enough to have that limit. The fact this provoker places the individual right on the cusp of being sighted or just over the line for legal blindness complicates this somewhat.

I would imagine most blind persons would love to drive a car anywhere you wish to go when you want it but pushing the limit to put other's at risk is simply irresponsible.

Lisa Blind-X listserv

**12. Honestly, I have never really thought of driving. I know that I can't read a street sign. However, we recently had to deal with this situation in my family An older member of the family has recently become blind. It has really freaked her out. She drove longer than she should have, and she had some close calls. She was really resistant to giving up her car, but she finally gave up driving. My personal feeling is if you need all those magnifiers and stuff, you really shouldn't be driving. This won't change until cars drive themselves. Just my thoughts.

Kasondra Payne Blindkid listserv

**13. Thank you for the opportunity to participate in this forum. I went from 20/20 to total blindness, 19 years ago. During my visual decline, I stopped driving when my vision was at 20/80.
An automobile weighing 1 1/4 up to 3 tons (and sometimes a little more), traveling 20 - 35 feet per second (residential speed) is a lethal weapon under the best of conditions.
During the time that I worked as a rehab counselor, I had a client who did not stop driving when the client's vision approached 20/200. One day while driving, the client was involved in a low-speed accident. The client's son was killed.
Although, it is a legal and personal choice, some events can occur that cannot be changed. The automobile is a wonderful means of independence.
Those of us who have had the opportunity to enjoy that independence do respect that, it is a privilege, not a right.

Mae & Merle Courson-Long

**14. Hello. I am a new member of this list, Mark Tardif from Cleveland, Ohio. I have a Masters in social work and am unemployed, presently looking for something
either in customer service or in social work, which is the career I spent most of my working life in.

This is an interesting story. I will say, however, that I think our friend the blind driver is being highly irresponsible and the state's licensing bureau
is being highly irresponsible to issue him even a restricted license. First of all, we see a couple of examples in this story that suggest he is uncertain
of what he is observing. For example, he is uncertain about the colors of certain cars, they look like the street background. He has to stop to use his
magnifier to observe traffic signals, because he is uncertain about them.
Also, he knows that with inclement weather approaching on both occasions discussed here, his visibility could be distorted and limited even more. For example,
he hopes the rain clouds on the horizon will stay there. There's thunder, the sun's gone.
Also, there seems to be a suggestion that he is nervous. He sings and talks to himself, as if to relax, telling himself to "go with the flow." This adds
yet another disadvantage to his situation. Sometimes, as in a job interview, a certain amount of nervousness is appropriate, it might make the candidate
more alert to possibly tough questions. But what if this driver is too nervous? What if this causes him to lose the ability to think quickly and clearly
if a car with a reckless or even intoxicated driver, suddenly cuts him off? One could even argue that his attempt to relax is not a good thing because
he should feel a certain amount of nervousness in his situation and acknowledge it. Perhaps he should be using that nervousness to help him concentrate
even more than the other drivers on the road.

Now, let's look at the other conditions around him. I have already mentioned the possibility of inclement weather and distorted street signs. But let's
talk about other drivers. More times than I can count, I have heard commercials talk about the need to assume that the other drivers around you are driving
poorly. One needs to overcompensate for their possible mistakes by being extremely careful. This man has to adapt to not only the issues I have discussed
above, but the normal problems every driver, competent or otherwise, has to adapt to. What if one of the drivers next to him is intoxicated? What if
he/she is falling asleep at the wheel and starts to unexpectedly veer into our friend's lane? Remember, he is already uncertain at times about what he
is observing. Or, what if this driver is not intoxicated, but is subject to the phenomena known as road rage and has had a particularly rough day and
just gets impatient with our friend who doesn't quite seem to know what he is doing? Also, keep in mind that a motor vehicle is a very powerful, dangerous
machine and one wrong move by an impaired driver, (and I do view our friend as impaired,) can quickly cause a serious, potentially fatal accident.

Now, what happens if such an accident does occur and it results in a law suit? What happens if, during the course of this law suit, it is discovered and
widely circulated that the state is giving licenses, restricted though they may be, to legally blind drivers? Think of the political fall-out, not to
mention the personal guilt this man might feel.
So, for reasons ranging from the fact that our friend already is limited in his ability to observe necessary signals, to the personal and political fall-out
that could result if a serious accident were to happen, not to mention the normal problems any driver would have, this man should most certainly not have
received even a restricted license.
I should also point out, finally, that as a blind person I think it is a blessing that I cannot drive and am not expected to drive. My sense is that norms
and attitudes about driving have changed, and definitely not for the better. I think it is a wonder that anyone can feel relaxed and try to actually
drive in this day and age. An example of how things have changed is that I hear countless stories from fellow blind pedestrians about how they are afraid
to use their mobility skills to cross streets because their sense is that drivers today are simply too fast, reckless, and not as careful as they once

Mark Tardif

**15. The vision in my better eye is exactly the same as Albert's. But I always was among the third of the population that considered my driving skills below average (read that carefully ). So I never tried to find out what it would take for me to be able to drive legally -- I figured that nothing would be as good as normal vision, and adding visual limitations to already below-average driving skills was a recipe for trouble. Luckily, good public transportation had been one of the criteria when I chose my house more than a quarter-century earlier.

I don't know enough about Albert's situation to comment. Obviously the DMV thinks he can drive safely. He's careful and may be up to the challenge. But it is a challenge. And the other side of the coin is that I don't know how essential driving may be in his circumstances. He should maybe consider the alternatives -- but what are they?

Bill T.

**16. I have low vision and so do two of my brothers. They drive. I do not.
I live in the city. They live in small towns with populations of 4,000
and 15,000 respectively. They don't drive in the city. People who
have low vision and who have received training in using bioptic lenses to drive, have very good driving records, according to the research I have read. The ones I worry about are the people who are adventitiously visually impaired who, with no training and no assistance, continue to drive long after they should because their license does not expire for another year or two. This fellow isn't hiding anything. He wears his bioptic glasses "for all the world to see." His 10X magnifier which he "surreptitiously" puts into his pocket is definitely overkill.
If he'd gone to a low vision specialist, he would very likely be using between a 5X and a 7X. No one in their right mind who has low vision is going to live with the extremely limited field of a 10X when they can get along very well thank you with the much more comfortable field of a 5X
or 7X. In fact, many of my clients with 20/200 vision do just fine
with 3X or 4X I find that the biggest opponents of bioptic driving are the people who have no understanding of bioptics, or the training provided in their use. Oh yes, there are those who oppose bioptics because they themselves either don't have them, are totally blind, or espouse the philosophy that people with low vision are just imperfect blind people.

Janis Stanger Utah gov

**18. I'm not sure about this. As a totally blind person since birth (by the grace of God), I've never driven. Yeah I dream about it when the crappy Phoenix buses
start showing their true colors, but I'm not planning on driving unless something changes. I personally believe that Albert's efforts to drive are futile
anyway because as soon as he loses that sun, he's out of luck. Why not figure out the buses and understand that your car is for your sixteen-year-old?
That's just my opinion, and I've never seen anything more than light in my twenty-four years.

Ben from Scottsdale Arizona

**17. The fact that this is, "basically a true story," only goes further to accentuate its tragic nature. Blindness, regardless of the resulting visual acuity, results in the blind person being prevented from doing some things, driving being one of them. This will change as technology generates tools that will serve as alternative methods of gathering information from the environment to the extent that, someday, blind people will be operators of vehicles. But we are not there yet, and any blind person who tries to drive a motor vehicle by means of relying on his or her remaining vision is one who has not come to terms with their blindness and such people are living (and horrifying examples of) the clichet "just enough sight to be dangerous."
But culpability rests, I believe with the agencies for the blind, and low-vision specialists, whom I consider criminals, who endorse this recklessness.
Agencies for the blind need to employ a defined philosophy that results in an atmosphere wherein blind people come to understand that it is respectable to be blind, and that blindness, just like any other characteristic, comes with its advantages and disadvantages. The fact that I am bald means that I need to wear a hat in the hot sun, a disadvantage; but I spend very little on shampoo. Such examples are countless, but my point is not unclear.
Low vision specialist who give a green light to a blind person's request to be cleared for driving should have their licenses revoked, no exceptions!

Chet Smalley

**18. You can't imagine the number of sighted people who know nothing about blindness issues or modifications/technology still ask me if I don't think we'll soon have something allowing blind people to drive.
I always answer in the affirmative.
The military's development of various positioning devices leads me to believe we're closer than many of us know.
But the unpredictable human factor, as the story so clearly illustrate, will always be the unknown component.
The level at which transportation intrudes its demands into our lives is not just a blindness issue. News stories are filled with info about people commenting on the hours spent in rush hour, commute or backed-up traffic.
Harper's recently had an article about off-roading in Hummers. People seemingly lament the loss of rural areas to residential lots where people build to be away from urban areas, but demand more roadways for the increasing numbers of cars.
And we who rely on para-trans, and public transit that's accessible, find ourselves spending days and days to carefully plan schedules. Is it any wonder I fantasized about starting my own shuttle service just so I could get a trip whenever and wherever - and me with a checkbook out of control.
It's a fact that in the Western world we're all governed by transportation,
and it's become our master rather our servant. And it will remain so, I
imagine. We're certainly not going; to revert to a subsistence culture, traveling within walking distance of our villages, if that much.
But if blind people in a; rural area, or in an ill-served area, want to travel, what can they do? Stretch the limits of technology? Get creative with the barter system, to include meals for miles (I'll cook you lasagna; you'll drive me to the dentist)? Get their legislators to enact workable transit systems for their community, albeit, most buses would roll empty?

I don't know. I am still pinning hopes on technology, but doubt we'll be getting a tractor beam in our next Christmas stockings.

kat Guam

**19. Wow, this story, if true is appalling. I gave up my drivers license long before the fellow in this provoker, and it was simply to ensure that I continued to live, as well as the others who use the roadways. Will someone please get this person off the road? Please?

Albert Ruel Victoria BC Canada

**20. My friend k.t. used to drive blind. She said the trees used to jump out at her. She got married to a Brit, who tended to drive on the wrong side of the road. Oy Gevalt! Dr. Maurer said the kindest thing I could do was to turn her into Motor Vehicles!

Lori Stayer Merick, New York USA

**21. "BUMP" The car jerked and there was a scream.. "Oh my god, what was that?"

What that was, was a four year old child that just ran out into the road to get his beloved ball. The Mom had turned her head only for a moment to say something
to her daughter who was in the house watching television.

When she turned back, she saw her child being dragged by a car who's driver appeared to be intoxicated.

Now, forward to fourteen months later.

"Turn that thing off," says a man in the next jail cell. "You're always listening to that thing and it is bothering the rest of us."

The screamer is referring to the noise coming from a cassette player on loan from the State library for the blind.

The driver of the car in the "thought Provoker" was sentenced to ten years for negligent homicide.

I have used a hypothetical answer to this installment of the "thought Provoker" as an introduction to some points I want to make.

Let me tell you a true story now.

I used to drive. My father or brother or a friend would sit in the passenger's seat and tell me right or left. Sometimes they would reach out a hand to
take control of the steering wheel.

This used to be a lot of fun for me. I have fond memories of stopping and asking people we knew if they wanted to go for a ride. Most of them, of course,
said an exclamatory "No!"

One night a sighted friend and I got into a car, strapped a keg into the backseat, and we took turns driving. Whoever wasn't driving, was filling paper
cups up with beer from the keg. I often wonder what I would have been arrested for if we had been stopped.

One day I was driving our family car. Some friends were in the back seat. We turned down a gravel road and my father was giving me directions. Suddenly
everyone in the backseat started yelling. Some were yelling "left!" and some were yelling "right!"

I couldn't hear my father's voice over the noise from the backseat and I turned the wrong way. We crashed through a fence, knocking fifty feet of it down.
It got all wrapped up in the car. We hit an embankment and the front grill of the car was smashed.

My mother told me to promise her I would not drive again.

I have not.

Now I realize how stupid my actions were.

People who have poor eyesight should not be driving period. Just as people who have consumed even a little alcohol should not be driving. It's no longer
about his or her liberties. Most of the things we do in life, walking down sidewalks unassisted, using a guide dog, going to public schools, getting jobs,
dating, going to recreational events, cooking our own meals, and operating in an independent manner is not going to effect others in such a way that we
could cause them harm. There are exceptions to the rule.

But, in driving, we are putting the lives of others in danger. There are enough distractions on the road. People brush their hair, eat, read and talk on
the cell phone all while driving. Sometime back a friend was showing us a DVD player in his car with a heads-up display. I was flabbergasted to say the

Distracted drivers are dangerous to everyone in their path.

Driving is serious business and it does not need to be impeded by any distractions.

A person with low vision is not going to be able to focus all their attention on driving because they will need to look around at their environment. If
the driver is straining eyes to read a sign then his or her focus is going to be completely on reading that sign. He or she will not be prepared to deal
with emergency changes or exigent circumstances.

Even a fully sighted person who is driving according to the traffic laws may have an accident or miss a turn. This is because the driver is also having
to watch out for the actions of other drivers.

It has been said time and time again that it's not enough to watch out for oneself on the road, but one must always be vigilant with regard to other drivers'

All it takes is a blink of the eye.

I used to travel a lot as a professional musician. Many times we would be traveling late at night (early in the morning, depending on your definition of
when night turns to day). We saw many drunk drivers on the road and were always cautious around them. We saw many wrecks and it is only by God's grace
that we weren't involved in one.

We had good drivers though. Drivers who's task was to drive and nothing more. These drivers didn't turn and talk to others in the vehicle. They didn't fiddle
with the radio or other things while driving.

I put my life in someone else's hands every time I get into a car. I don't want to put my life in the hands of someone who can't see well enough to read
a road sign or a street sign.

I understand the problems with paratransit, busses, taxis and other means of transportation. I know that we wish sometimes we could drive when we can't
get to some place. There were times when I wished I could drive. There are things I want to do on my own without having to rely on someone else. But, I've
had to come to terms with some limitations.

Sometimes I think I'd like to buy a car so I could have others drive it to get me to the places I need to go. One day I might.

I am totally blind but I can say with certainty that I wouldn't drive even if I were partially sighted because I might become a distracted driver.

As I said earlier, I spent many hours on the road. In 1998, my band mates and I spent 50 out of the 52 weekends on the road. We traveled at least 150 miles
every time we went anywhere. Sometimes we traveled over 500 miles. We read books and brochures for tips on traveling safely. We knew we couldn't totally
safeguard ourselves but we did what we could to lessen our chances of becoming a casualty on the highways.

A few times, distracted drivers almost wiped us out but our vigilant driver helped to avoid those potential catastrophes.

Rex Leslie Howard, Jr. rex.howard@gmail.com

**22. **. I made the decision at twenty not to get my driver's license when I took the eye test with my glasses and could only make out the A. It scared me to think
that even though I couldn't read the chart, the DMV employee was going to pass me! I'd failed driver's ed in high school because of my vision; I'd almost
decapitated myself for failing to see a long metal pipe hanging off the end of a truck and the driving instructor hit the e brake, saving my life. When
he stopped yelling at me, I saw that there was a large orange flag taped to the end of the pipe and I didn't even see it. Needless to say I rode my bike
a lot. Now that isn't even an option unless it's a tandem bike. Anyway, I'm glad I made the right choice at DMV that day. I could not live with myself
if I knew my vision was the cause of harm to another person or animal.

Ann Chiappetta, M.S.
Family Therapist

**23. Just regarding the words "blind drivers", there was something on TV some time ago where a guy with a white cane tried to pretend to be the classic stereotypic blind person (eg, head back "staring off into space", dark glasses, white cane, etc.) and was asking for help finding his car. He found someone to help him and gave a description of what his car would look like. The person helped him, and so he pulls out his key, opens the driver's door, and starts to get in.

He then asks for directions. The words "at about 20 miles an hour for about twelve seconds, then turn right" were in there somewhere. Now that provoked nothing but laughter from me. I guess a few people without a sense of humor would have found it offensive, but it was so completely ludicrous, it was great!

Joseph Carter -

**24. Oh, my goodness, that guy shouldn't have been driving. Licenses should be given out a lot more carefully. Many people try to drive with diminished vision, but it just isn't a good idea.

Leslie Miller

**25. Look, it all depends upon the way the legally blind driver uses the fision he has, along with some common sense, knows where his strengths are and is wise about minimizing the possibility of getting into a situation where he can't lead with his strengths. This is one combo that will work for being blind and a safe driver. I'm legally blind and drive. I do have special glasses. I do restrict where, how and when I go places. But I make it all work, been doing it for 41+ years. No accidents that were caused by me; once some one rear-ended me, their falt.

Mick J.

**26. He should put all this equipment on a shelve in home turn in license and sell his car. He should not be driving anymore.

I have run into several driver over my life that should have not been driving. Women in this town she could not read how fast she was traveling.
Her so friends would not turn her in and get her license pull.

In most state now eye doctor are require to report them type of people directly to motor vehicle.

My Mother quit driving after she had a minor fencer bender. She kept the car for several years after she quit driving.

What most driver does not realize in most cities and town there are transportation available. Sometime it hard to find it.
Many people do not know where to go for help. Your local library, your cities office, chamber of commerce and ask around churches.

This guy driving with all this equipment would sooner or later kill someone and he would have that to live with rest of his life.

Losing one independence is very hard to give up . It IS HARD rough to travel.

Now day to get somewhere you better have money to pay for travel. They do not want chicken feed but bucks.

I see many people when I had sight trying to see. There husband or wife leading them around trying to show they were not blind.
So we allow blind kill walker whom might be you.


**27. That was an interesting introduction, Mr. Newman. You asked, "What is your take on the general issue as stated in this title?" Then you gave a clue as
to the correct answer when you defined "legal" blindness.
Now, perhaps the average person might laugh (albeit nervously) at the title, and think, "What's he going to do, let his DOG drive? And how can he drive
in the dark?" But your introduction was a trick question. Yes, it is certainly possible for a blind person to see just enough to try a stunt like this;
but that's exactly what it is: a STUNT, and a pretty foolish one at that.
I hate to say it, but this guy is flat-out crazy. I understand the "independence" angle, but this is taking it WAY too far! I've read a number of true
stories about people who were losing their vision, and all of them eventually had to admit that they could no longer drive safely. This guy is an accident
waiting to happen.

There are too many variants that could occur in this situation. He THINKS he can plan ahead to avoid bridges and tunnels, and map out a "sunny" route;
but how does he know it will happen as planned? What if there's a detour? Or what if a big truck drives alongside his car, throwing it into a shadow? What
if there's a sudden thunderstorm that obscures the sun with thick cloud cover? (Weather forecasts can sometimes be wrong! Imagine that!)
Any one of these things could occur, and mess up the driver. Give it up, buddy! Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall!
If your friends are real, they will take the keys before you kill yourself and others!

David Lafleche

**28. Albert's actions are not prudent! For years, I was legally blind, but could see well enough not to need a cane or visual aids. I suffer with RP and I drove an automobile 20 years without thought of the consequences. My motives were purely selfish until one day a friend reminded me of the sorrow that would be strewn profusely over many lives if I should run over a child or cause a family to be wiped out in a car crash. It did not take me long to realize my error. I quit driving and although the adjustment was the most difficult I have had to deal with as a blind person, the decision was a correct one. I was fortunate. I injured no one seriously (I did brush one pedestrian once whom I blamed for not moving out of a cross walk fast
enough) and although I had loads of auto body repairs for dents and dings, today I encourage all of my blind friends not to drive. It's just not worth it!

Jim Theall, Longmont, Colorado

**29. I drive and maybe I shouldn't be. A visual handicap is so hard it takes so much away. I do not want to give up this last independence. I try and drive only to the store. I creep along I stop at every corner. My friends tell me to give it up but I can't.


**30. This kind of person is much too common and in my opinion he is showing total idiocy and too much self centeredness. He should face reality before he kills himself or others because he lacks common sense. He will face reality when he mows over a child or a motorcycle or any number of other possibilities. Too many visually impaired are trying to beat the odds and those of us that are totally blind have no choice in the driving matter and we manage and so can he and not jeopardize the public with his foolishness.-

Alan Hagenstein Minot, ND

**31. I am still driving. It’s scary, but I need to do it. This story gave me thought. But I live alone in the country and need to get to town. I’ve contemplated switching to my old tractor which is slower but it takes more gas. I drive only when the sun is right and I drive slow. I park on side streets. Are there any others on this forum that are like me? I have bleeding at the back of the eyes. I can see big objects and even people but I can not tell who a person is by looking at them. My eyes don’t adjust fast that is why I go with the sun at high noon.


**32. I know a few people have been in this same situation, my first counselor with the NYS Commission for the Blind. When she turned 50 her vision reversed itself and she was able to drive though she had to wear telescope glasses, probably couldn't see peripherally, etc. My step sister, who lost the sight in one eye from cancer and the other eye's been digressing, had a drivers license but finally gave it up. If I didn't see well enough too see the traffic lights or the street signs I wouldn't want to drive. I live on Long Island. The only way to get around here is by car, but I can bet a lot of the drivers can't see well enough to be behind the wheel.
Also, either someone should take Albert on a dry run ahead of time, drive him there or he should memorize the directions.

Patricia H.

**33. I had better not give my full thoughts here! When my eye specialist told me I was legally blind, he told me that at least told me I was legally blind, he told me that at least in Washington State if I were in an accident of any kind, & even completely in the right, were it found out I had serious eye trouble the book would be thrown at me & I would be found guilty. So I stopped driving right then!
Now where we live I had a friend who was beyond legally blind. He went to the Motor Vehicle department to renew his I.D. Card. Just on a thought he asked if he might try the vision test. He would read a line & miss letters.
The instructor would tell him to try again. After several tries on several lines, the instructor told him he had his drivers license! Fortunately, he never used it to drive! Something is wrong here!

Ernie, ejonessr@gohighspeed.com

**34. This is an interesting story and one that past clients and acquaintances have been forced to deal with. I am so fortunate that I've been blind from age 8, so never had the opportunity to drive, nor did I need to deal with the tremendous loss that some people seem to experience. Society seems to teach that driving is the badge of independence, so those of us who don't drive, are considered to be dependent. I think, to people who become blind as adults, the loss of a driver's license is one of the most traumatic and hard to accept of all of the handicaps that result from disability. By "handicap", I mean those daily activities that are impaired, such as driving, reading, writing, etc. Handicaps may be temporary, such as the handicap of traveling by not driving. Using cabs or buses are how we adapt, thus lessening the handicap.

Anyway, I feel sorry for Albert, because he is endeavoring to maintain that false sense of independence, rather than learning other techniques. Even more important, is his obvious need to adjust his attitude and beliefs about
disability. When I first started reading the piece, I thought, "how would
he feel if he hit and injured or killed someone, because of his pride and stubborn unwillingness to accept his limitations. It is certainly too bad when people, like Albert, are dependent on their inadequate vision and the socially accepted dependence on it, instead of truly learning and using adaptive skills that would enable him to become more independent.

Doug Hall (Daytona Beach, Florida)
Our Orientation and adjustment Center is currently wrestling with the questions of what is more important, teaching people to use their remaining vision more effectively or having them learn how to use all of their senses.

**35. This selection did exactly what it said; provoked thought.

I'm sort of an elitist when it comes to all things blind-related. I try not to be a jerk about it, but it's true anyway. I think people should just learn to let go of sight as the all-important super-sense, and relegate it to its proper place, as just one of five and possibly more senses, no more or less important, equally so. Instead, they do what Albert does, getting every last shred of use out of sight, often neglecting their other senses and the sometimes equally useful information gotten from them. I once knew a woman who tried her best to use her remaining vision to get around with.
While she moved very uncertainly and hesitantly, another friend with about the same amount of vision used her cane to navigate rings around the first woman.

Having said that, on the other hand, not even an elitist jerk like me can drive. My usual joke is, "I *CAN* drive; they just won't let me."
Technically, that's true, but it doesn't help. All my senses won't give me enough information for me to drive. As I grow older, I realize just how much easier the world would be if I could drive. As I continue to lose my hearing, I fight vehemently against every new bit of evidence that a little more has slipped away. Your portrayal of him makes Albert sound very tense, scared, and on many levels keenly aware that he's pushing the envelope trying to drive with his vision loss. He does it anyway, and I'm not sure I'd do differently; hope so, but know better.

This is your best one yet.

Mark BurningHawk BlindLaw listserv

**36. I am kind of like the person from the first letter. I have underdeveloped retinas due to premature birth, and because of it I have no peripheral vision,
almost no vision in my right eye, and no size shape and form of depth perception. Well, I didn’t know I had vision problems until I was adopted when
I was 8. I had always thought that I was just slow, but I soon learned differently. I am now 16 and I have just gotten my first cane about 4 months ago
because I kept falling off curbs and down steps. To be honest it was my dads idea, and at first I was reluctant to use it. However after talking to
my eye doctor at the low vision clinic in Jackson MS and having him explain to me that I really should use it because it would only take one fall for my
retina to detach then I wouldn’t have a choice to use the cane or not. well my mom and I got to thinking about it and we decided that it would be a good
idea if I learned brail and mobility skills so that if something does happen I would be a little prepared. well no one at school told me that the lady
who was supposed to evaluate me for brail had come and I missed the appointment. I have not heard anything about it since. Another
thing I would like to see if maybe any of ya'll can help me with is that I am in the high school band and I have a very hard time sight reading. I have
my music enlarged and I use highlighters , but I can only see about 2-3 notes at a time. I cant turn my head as I go because then my eyes have a very
hard time focusing on the measure that I am on. Now I can have another person play the music and I can play it back to them, but sense I learned how to
play my clarinet by sight and my alto sax by sound Its kind of a difficult thing. I don’t want to abandon one way for the other because I m afraid that
if I start reading by sound I'll lose my ability to read by sight and vise versa. Sorry I didn’t mean to complain but maybe someone might be able to give
me some suggestions.

Mytchiko McKenzie

…FROM ME: “I wrote this young gentleman and suggested that he joing the NFB Music listserv and ask them for ideas. Any other ideas out there?”

**37. I've read the responses and thought it was very interesting. The first few
people worked hard to justify their driving, even though they're legally
blind. They seem to see it as a right an *no one* is going to tell them
that they can't drive, because they know better. Please let me know when
they're on the road, so I can get far away! It's very irresponsible.

Then there is Mary and Matthew. These two people obviously know that they
*should not* be driving. They also don't want to be told as much, because
they didn't give their last names or locations. But, even though they
*need* to drive, they'd better think long and hard about the other people on
and off the roads. There have been many people who injured or killed
pedestrians on the sidewalks, or even individuals in buildings, just because
they didn't want to give up the independence.

If you have to work so hard to justify your continuing to drive, or if you
admit that you shouldn't, but still do, then there's something seriously
wrong and someone should get these irresponsible, inconsiderate individuals
off the street.

Cindy Handel Willow Street, PA

**38. My family has RP. My husband drove longer than he should have, he also asked me to help him with traffic signs and drove only under good sight conditions.
I finally said, "Enough, please quit driving." He did. Our oldest daughter never has driven, the next daughter is still driving with special lenses.
I wish she would quit. Our 25 year old son decided on his own this past month, to quit driving and rides a bike to work. Drivers are not careful around
him, which frightens me, but there is no public transportation where we live. Our youngest son gave up his license last year voluntarily. They are not
afraid of their own driving skills, but can not predict nor see well enough to watch out for the idiots on the road who are reading newspapers, talking
on cell phones, putting on makeup etc. They are also afraid of running over someone's beloved pet, or worse, a child. I applaud their selflessness.
It is not easy to make that decision especially when one lives in a rural setting like we do where transportation is a necessity. Remember the old adage,
"Better safe than sorry." Also live so you have no regrets.

Rory Iowa USA

**39. I am appalled that even one blind person would think that he has a right to
drive just because other people who use cell phones while driving or have
other distractions are allowed to drive. Since when do two negatives make a
positive? I am getting angrier by the minute. Where in hell is NFB and
AFB, and why do state DMV offices allow driver's licenses to be issued to
vision impaired people? Have we gone completely mad? Come on blinks-get
some sense!

Jim Theall, Longmont, Colorado

**40. In a message dated 6/25/06 10:07:19 AM Eastern Daylight Time, newmanrl@cox.net writes:
Block quote start
I as a
sighted driver with no corrective lenses do feel that you should stop
driving when you have trouble seeing the street signs period.
Block quote end

Well, here I beg to differ. I am fully sighted and can't see the *&$% street signs! They are far too small. Finally, Long Island has begun to put in
street signs with bigger letters, but progress is slow.
Florida has the right idea. I wouldn't move there (too hot) but at least I can see the signs.

Lori Stayer Merik, New York

**41. I do not know how I received your message, but I am certainly happy that I did.
I am visually impaired. I have a hereditary vision disease that has led into more diseases.
I drive one time a day in the correct weather conditions. I still work part time and drive to and from work (about 20 minutes one way).
I have figured out what time to leave our home for there to be less traffic to contend with.
I drive in the center lane, as I can no longer move to the right lane (from the center lane).
I have also learned to make left turns only, when possible.
I drive the speed limit and I'm constantly watching.
I have seen worse drivers with 'normal' vision.
Cars have been in the left hand turn lane only to cut across traffic and turn right. Not fun for anyone, let alone someone visually impaired.
I do not drive after dusk, but one evening I had to as I stayed too late at work. It was very difficult for me to make a left hand turn as another vehicle
was riding my bumper and the head lights blinded me even more. Even a 'normal' driver would have been upset.
I have also seen women putting on make-up, or someone reading something on the seat of their car, or talking on a cell phone, etc.
I believe I am much more conscious of what I am doing and what I should be doing ... driving safely.
Hope this helps.

Carol from Toledo OH

**42. I stopped driving when I was about twenty years old. I actually never acquired a driver's license, as I was afraid of failing the eye test, and having people find out that I was legally Blind. I rarely drove a car, as it was difficult to detect objects on the right side of the car, so I primarily drove a motorcycle, a Honda 175, and I loved that bike!
In fact, I still have the key, and the specially painted gas tank.

There was no particular incident which caused me to give up driving, except that the clutch was wearing out, and I sent it in for repairs, and I was too poor to get it out of the shop, and I never saw it again. It Is truly amazing that I only got caught once by the police. I had four tickets at once:
1. driving without a license
2. speeding
3. driving without a helmet
4. I think it was driving without a headlight being on.

The judge asked me if there was a reason I did not have a license, and I lied to the judge and said no, because I was afraid of the news getting out to the world that I was legally Blind.
There are a few incidences that stick in my mind. I have RP, so I never drove at night, but one time, I stayed at a girl friend's house too long, and she lived about 15 miles out of town, in the country, and it was dark when I got back to town. I turned one street too soon, and nearly drove into a chain that was stretched across the road, which was near a water tower. But all was fine, and I walked my bike home from there, and I made sure to not ever be out driving at night again.
I have always been able to see more in the day-time, and despite that, on bright sunny days, it was sometimes difficult to tell the color of the traffic lights, and I used to sort of go-with-the-flow, so if the cars beside me were slowing down, I would do the same, relying on the sound of the cars near me, while I was looking around for left-to-right traffic as well.
One time, I was heading up a viaduct, on a sunny day, and there was apparently construction going on, in the right lane, as there was orange cones angling off the right lane. I noticed this in two ways, the first cone was hit by my right foot peg, and went shooting off to the right, and then I noticed a worker doing the dance with his arms out to the sides, and jumping left and right, wondering what I was going to do, and I then moved into the left lane, and all was well at that point.

In recent years, and my counsel to my clients about driving, I have heard many stories about folks who have a hard time with the selfless act of giving up driving.
I have many times talked to the proverbial "little old lady" who says that she does not drive on the highway, but just drives around town, and these are towns that are at most, a mile across each direction. One lady told me that she still drives on the highway, and she drives her husband's truck, and is able to keep from weaving around by lining up the hood ornament with the line on the road. I don't know which is worse, the town driving or the highway driving, for low-vision drivers, as in town, you have children running out into the street, and on the highway, you can wipe out a car full of innocent people. But frankly, I am not concerned with the safety of the person who is only thinking of him or herself.
But if you are driving, and you do care about your safety, or you don't wish to leave your loved ones hurting over your loss, wash your thoughts out with this; I recently lost a client who was told by his optometrist that he was okay to drive, and he was a bit uncertain about doing so, but he did from time to time. But he mostly drove a 4-wheeler around his farm. He decided to take the 4-wheeler out to get the mail, which was not too far away, just down the road a bit, and he was wiped out by a truck hauling grain, and pulling a tank full of a liquid for spraying. My client was killed, and his death effected everyone who knew him, and some who didn't.
Now, he would not only be alive today if he would have walked that little distance to get his mail, but he would be a lot healthier for having done more walking, and he was healthy enough to walk a mile.

People would be so much better off by walking anyway. I remember my mom telling me that my Dad never walked, and he would drive his car 2 blocks to go vote which is ridiculous.
If you have problems walking, there are many options, for example, if one can only walk a few blocks at a time, a suggestion is that you can pull a shopping cart, not the type in the stores, but the kind one buys for this purpose, and put a little folding chair in it, which will not take up much room in the cart, and when you tire, stop, ant take out the chair and sit down. These criss-cross type camping chairs could even be hooked to the side of the cart if it is full of groceries, or carried with a strap if one isn't pulling the cart, and you will be a lot healthier. Or another example is that you could use either paid drivers, or public transportation, both of which are less expensive than owning your own car. My point is, that there is never a reason one must drive, and the life you may be saving may be your own, in more ways than one.

In conclusion, I would like to address the argument that due to your awareness of the problem, that you are more aware of your surroundings than the sighted person who takes everything for granted. Then I must ask, can you be at your best 100% of the time you are driving?
I don't think so.
And if you are in an accident, is it possible that you will always be asking yourself, "If I could see better, might I have seen that little kid running out from between the cars?"
Eye doctors have typically claimed that they know what it is like for us to see by reading an eye chart, and as I have mentioned before in a prior provoker, an eye doctor once asked me, after examining my eyes, if I really thought I needed the cane, which he did not notice before the test, and I told him that I would not be using it if I didn't think so. So doctors really don't know what it is like for us to see.
And we can say that the sighted get into accidents because of cell phones, or drunkenness, but that doesn't make it right for us to drive. For if someone gets into an accident for the aforementioned reasons, then the driver should be punished in a more punitive manner than the innocent accident that was not apparently caused by a selfish act, in my opinion.
My wife told me of a car accident that happened to a fully sighted person the other day, the driver is the son-in-law of someone she works with, and his wife was in the car at the time. He was distracted, and drove into the back of a car at a stop light, and he hurt his neck, and fortunately, that is the worse that came from this accident. But the reason I mention this, is that my wife, said that it is easy to do, as she has almost done it herself, and she is fully sighted.
It is not safe to drive, and it takes 100% of our attention and senses all the time, and if we are not up to the task, visually, or mentally, we should give up the keys.

Glenn Ervin, Northeast Nebraska.

**43. I may be branded as intolerant, but I can't see how any pro-blind-driver
arguments have any merit, because of the safety factor. I have teenagers
who drive, they are sighted and do very well, but the thing that has been
drilled into me as a mom of a young driver is how much reaction time is cut
down the faster a car goes. When our girls first started driving I would
always remind them about the 3-second rule--see below.

This whole issue is about adult responsibility, and I would say to any blind
drivers out there, if you have the least qualm, get off the road--or at
least stay off the roads my daughters travel! (grin) I'm trying to keep
this light-hearted, but I couldn't be more serious.

I personally know a man, a "high partial" who was driving slowly down the
street in front of his home, hit his neighbor's daughter and she was killed.
It's the unexpected that will wipe you out, and reaction time is everything!

"Perception is about one second and time to react is about three-fourths of
a second in ideal conditions.

Allowing enough space between you and other cars on the road allows for time
to react in case of an emergency.
. As the car in front of you passes a fixed point like a sign, tree or
building, count "one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three". If
reach the designated point before three, slow down.
. Increase your distance by one for each bad driving condition. For rain and
fog you would add two seconds.
. Make sure you drive in the middle of the lane to allow space on the side
of the car.
. If the driver behind you is too close, change lanes and let them pass.

Want to instill some respect in a young driver for the forces that can be
unleashed in a crash? Here's a harmless way to do it - just be careful...
. Make sure your vehicle doesn't have a fragile plastic license plate frame
positioned in front of the bumper (If you have any doubts about the idea, or
are worried about damage, don't try it. Or, you drive.)
. You or your teen pull into a parking space that abuts a solid concrete
. Stop, and then move forward slowly until the vehicle's front bumper
contacts with the wall. Even at one mile an hour, the sensation will send a
through both of you."

I'll leave you with this last question: Would you want one of your loved
ones driving the same road you drive, or do you feel you are a safe enough
driver taking someone in the car?

Judy Jones

**44. My husband is just legally blind and has driven for more then thirty years. Though he has been hit from behind while stopped for lights he has never been the cause of or ticketed person in an accident. He happens to have lots of usable vision and really needs the scopes for distance.

My husband is very cautious but not a driver that can't stay with traffic. His license is not restricted in any way except that he must wear his glasses. One thing that has made is driving much easier are the "gps systems" that are available. That keeps his eyes on the road and not looking for signs as much.

My Husband has other health issues and is careful not to drive when he is not feeling well or very stressed.

We feel that responsibility is the most important factor for visually impaired drivers. Cases should be judged individually.

Brewer Henryetta

**45. Based on my experiences of being a pedestrian who rides the bus or cabs, or has a friend who gives me a ride, I don't think that there's any difference
between a blind driver or a sighted driver. While I have yet to ride in a car with a blind driver or cross in front of a blind driver, I've been with
too many sighted people who aren't paying attention to what they're doing. Even at that, John and I have had people who actually see us as we're getting
ready to cross the street and then purposefully pull in front of us as we're trying to cross. So, this is one of those cases of ?who's the worst driver?
The sighted or the blind one?" I would say that neither can be no worse or no better than the other. After all, it is the sighted drivers who should
know better than to be driving after drinking, yet they still go out and drive anyway, risking their lives and other people's lives with them.