October 5, 2002
I am writing this not only as a blind individual, but also as the mother of a
blind mentally retarded daughter. I am also am a member of The National
Federation of the Blind.
I do not want audible traffic signs or detachable warning devices placed at any
intersection. My reasons for this is the following: If a blind or visually
impaired person has the proper mobility and orientation training they have
learned to listen for the flow of traffic. The need for beeping, chipping or
talking signs are invalid. Not only that but if you have received the proper
training your surroundings will give you the warnings you need. As a blind
individual I pride myself in being able to go where I want and when I want
without the help of signs or warnings beeping at me. My daughter who just two
years ago attended and graduated from the Colorado Center for the Blind on more
than occasion said she hated the talking traffic signs there as it became
confusing during the heavy traffic periods to hear which sign was beeping. She
also travels independently.
When you have busy traffic the noise overrides any beeping or chirping sound and
then one can easily confuse where they are suppose to be going or doing at that
time. Audible signs also do nothing to help the deaf and blind individual.
Although most blind individuals prefer to be independent there are times when we
do need assistance. The best way to do that if anything most be done other than
asking for assistance when needed would be to put vibrating poles in at the
intersections that are the most traffic on it.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.