To the Access Board:
I am pleased to have the opportunity to respond to the U.S. Access Board’s request for comments to the second draft to the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) Accessibility Guideline for Passenger Vessels.
There are over 30 million American with some degree of hearing loss. The prevalence of hearing loss increase with age of 1 and 3 people over the age of 65 having some degree of hearing loss. This is the population most often seeking to take cruises. Accommodation are seriously lacking to meet the needs of this population. This includes myself as for the past 45 years I have traveled on various ships. Each Cruise I have taken, I have requested many of the assistive listening devices. Not always do they accommodate my request. During the fire drill I miss most of the verbal instructions. I have taken extra steps to alert the staff that I am hard of hearing, requested in advance Assistive Listening and Alerting Devices. Some have complied most have not.
In case of a fire and other hazardous matters such as the options of entertainment, lectures, tours, telephone communications the following equipment and devices should be required.
In room televisions with captioning
Hearing aid compatible telephones
TTY (text telephone)
Visual/tactile door alerts
Visual/tactile alerts for emergency and for the telephone Vibrating alarm clock Assistive listening system available for tours and for entertainment.
Utilization of the appropriate International Symbols of Hearing Access.
Training Staff members location of the equipment, how to use the product Appropriate Communication strategies for hard of hearing and Deaf /Blind) Personally Alerting persons with disabilities (Hard of Hearing, Deaf and Deaf/Blind
Thank you for the opportunity to provide input.
Joan L. Lynton
Member: advocates for better communication/a.b.c.
League for the Hard of Hearing
New York, N.Y. 10003