Deaf drivers reach proposed settlement with UPS

Calvin

In Hazzard County
Super Moderator
Premium Member
Deaf drivers reach proposed settlement with UPS

SAN FRANCISCO — Lawyers for about 1,000 deaf and hard-of-hearing drivers today announced a proposed settlement of a long-running discrimination lawsuit filed against United Parcel Service Inc. in federal court in San Francisco.

The settlement of the suit initiated in 1999 by present and former drivers against Atlanta-based UPS, the world's largest package delivery company, must still be approved by U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson.

The proposed pact would establish a protocol with a new hearing standard, set by a panel of outside experts, to determine whether deaf and hard-of-hearing employees can drive lightweight vans weighing less than 10,000 pounds.

Larry Paradis, a lawyer for the drivers, said the standard was found to be adequate to ensure safety, but is less restrictive than one set by the U.S. Department of Transportation for drivers of heavier trucks.

Paradis is executive director of Berkeley-based Disability Rights Advocates.
He said, "In the end, we struck a balance and worked with UPS to develop a compromise that serves the needs of both UPS and the class (of drivers)."

UPS Fleet Manager Gerry Eaker said, "UPS remains committed to treating our employees with disabilities, including those with hearing impairments, fairly, while maintaining our unwavering commitment to public safety."

Eaker said, "The hearing protocol that is part of this agreement allows us to achieve both goals simultaneously."

The company's previous policy was that it automatically barred workers from driving the smaller trucks, known as package cars, if they didn't meet the Department of Transportation standard for drivers of heavier trucks weighing more than 10,000 pounds.

That standard required drivers to be able to hear a forced whisper from five feet away. The less restrictive new standard for the smaller vehicles would require drivers to hear a sound of 45 decibels at either of two given frequencies, Paradis said.

The lawsuit claimed that drivers' ability to drive lightweight vans safely should be evaluated on an individual basis.

Henderson ruled in favor of the drivers in 2004 and a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed in 2006. But last year, an expanded panel of the appeals court sent the case back to Henderson for further proceedings.

Henderson will hold a hearing on June 29 on whether to grant preliminary approval of the proposed settlement.

Paradis said UPS will then try out the proposed protocol for a year before both sides return to Henderson's court for a fairness hearing on final approval of the plan.

The proposed settlement also calls for additional training and regular hearing testing of deaf and hearing-impaired drivers.

In an earlier part of the case, the drivers and UPS reached a settlement in 2003 on two other claims related to accommodations and promotions for deaf people.

The company agreed in the earlier settlement to improve communications systems, working conditions, promotion opportunities and workplace safety for deaf employees.
Deaf drivers reach proposed settlement with UPS

Let's see what happens down the road.
 

diehardbiker

Active Member
Hope they're giving a go ahead. Once go ahead and wait one year, then we can ask them to come up with proof that Deaf drivers has greater risk of accident than Hearing drivers. WATCH, they will NOT be able to prove this, which in turn may expand to heavier vehicles.
 

Calvin

In Hazzard County
Super Moderator
Premium Member
Hope they're giving a go ahead. Once go ahead and wait one year, then we can ask them to come up with proof that Deaf drivers has greater risk of accident than Hearing drivers. WATCH, they will NOT be able to prove this, which in turn may expand to heavier vehicles.
Right, so let's hope they will comply, so wait and see what happens. I work for UPS over 13 years so I know how they are.
 

shel90

Audist are not welcome
Premium Member
They are anal about safety, they are worried if they can't hear and they will get into accidents. :roll:
They need to be educated about deaf people and driving big time.

Good for those deaf people who fought back!
 

JClarke

AD Veteran
Premium Member
:roll: -- Seriously, deaf people are better drivers than they think. Hope they will go well and give the opportunity for the deafies who work for USPS.
 

Buffalo

Active Member
Those hearing drivers can have accidents when they are arguing with someone over cell phone. I just think that deaf drivers are better at driving because they use eyes more than the hearing drivers. The deaf drivers better not be texting while driving!!
 

shel90

Audist are not welcome
Premium Member
I don't think hearing drivers would use the cell phone while on the job. If they do, then I hope they get fired. Same goes for deaf people texting/driving while on the job.
 

rjcon88

New Member
I don't think hearing drivers would use the cell phone while on the job. If they do, then I hope they get fired. Same goes for deaf people texting/driving while on the job.
They do... and text also. I've watched many of my drivers from my center talk on the phone and a few of the younger ones text while I was with them as a driver helper.
 

VamPyroX

bloody phreak from hell
Right, so let's hope they will comply, so wait and see what happens. I work for UPS over 13 years so I know how they are.
Yeah.

They should actually be doing research on the percentage of accidents caused by deaf and hearing drivers on jobs involving driving.

I've heard lots of stories of Fedex, UPS, and DHL drivers having accidents... and they were hearing. Never heard anything with deaf people.
 

Buffalo

Active Member
I don't think hearing drivers would use the cell phone while on the job. If they do, then I hope they get fired. Same goes for deaf people texting/driving while on the job.
I won't be surprised if they (both deaf and hearing) use cell phone on the sly.
 

Em903

New Member
Premium Member
The only thing I could possibly think of this being a situational thing is having to hear for shipment moving around in the truck? Idk, I have friends who work for FedEx and it's pretty dangerous with all that cargo moving around pretty quick. Even if that is the case (in terms of having to hear if something has shifted) that would be pretty lame. Like unless it were chemicals or something potentially hazardous...

Weird but at least strides towards a better future, yes?
 

Frisky Feline

Well-Known Member
interesting. I remember I took a road test. I made a few mistakes in my own road test. Oh I forget what's it called for the person who observes me to see if i can pass the test to get a license. anyway this person from dmv gave me a pass and told me that he knew deaf people drives real well and he saw me doing by looking around very careful. He said to me that i just need to work on wheeling that i can get better in no time and no reason why i should fail for it. He approved that i passed it. I never forget how he wrote on the paper telling me that he stated "deaf drivers do drive well than hearing drivers." I felt good about it because he is well edcuated about deaf people's skilling abitlity in driving vehicles.
 

Buffalo

Active Member
The only thing I could possibly think of this being a situational thing is having to hear for shipment moving around in the truck? Idk, I have friends who work for FedEx and it's pretty dangerous with all that cargo moving around pretty quick. Even if that is the case (in terms of having to hear if something has shifted) that would be pretty lame. Like unless it were chemicals or something potentially hazardous...

Weird but at least strides towards a better future, yes?
Don't they have a 'cage' dividing the cargo from the driver to protect the driver??
 

Calvin

In Hazzard County
Super Moderator
Premium Member
Don't they have a 'cage' dividing the cargo from the driver to protect the driver??
There is a bulkhead door that comes between the driver and cargo. The driver has to close the cargo door while they leave the truck to deliver packages. They also have to close the door when the truck is moving. What UPS is anal about safety is, if they can't hear horn, siren or any kind of noise surrounding. If the children playing around the package car without driver knowledge, and if they run over and if driver can't hear screams etc.

They are just worried about the liability bs. Hearing drivers do get in accidents and it had happened in my UPS location which totalled a couple of UPS trucks in the past.

It not just about deaf drivers, its hearing drivers also have safety issues too. Also UPS is part of federal company and is with DOT rules same as postal service. Independent company probably would be different and let deaf people drive, such as floral delivery, pizza delivery, etc for example.

Let's hope in the long run they will resolve this and at least give deaf drivers a try for those drivers job. Like I said earlier it's wait and see situation.
 

Foxrac

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
I would like to see any law that allows deaf people to drive on semi-truck.

I love to drive alot.
 

purplecatty

Active Member
I would like to see any law that allows deaf people to drive on semi-truck.

I love to drive alot.
I second that!!!!!!!!!!

I works for USPS and I drives LLV (Grumann Long Live Vehicle) and I am planning to apply CDL license to drive 1 ton truck in the future. Post Office didn't have issue for deaf Carriers to drive LLV or Flex Fuel truck (replacement for LLV).

Catty
 

purplecatty

Active Member
There is a bulkhead door that comes between the driver and cargo. The driver has to close the cargo door while they leave the truck to deliver packages. They also have to close the door when the truck is moving. What UPS is anal about safety is, if they can't hear horn, siren or any kind of noise surrounding. If the children playing around the package car without driver knowledge, and if they run over and if driver can't hear screams etc.

They are just worried about the liability bs. Hearing drivers do get in accidents and it had happened in my UPS location which totalled a couple of UPS trucks in the past.

It not just about deaf drivers, its hearing drivers also have safety issues too. Also UPS is part of federal company and is with DOT rules same as postal service. Independent company probably would be different and let deaf people drive, such as floral delivery, pizza delivery, etc for example.

Let's hope in the long run they will resolve this and at least give deaf drivers a try for those drivers job. Like I said earlier it's wait and see situation.

Do they have convex mirror on back of UPS truck (mirror mounted on top side or side of truck)? (similiar to what you saw at Convenience store or Grocery store for clerk to see what their customers are up to at back end of the store) This allow driver to see what's behind the truck while backing up. Do they have two mirrors on driver's left or right side, one large rectangular mirror adjusted that driver can see convex mirror on back side of truck and upper surrounding area and 2nd mirror is a "fish eyed" view mirror to see everything on side of the truck??

Most important thing is to back up SLOWLY!! Not just normal backup. Also must have Emergency flasher on while backing up. It's driver's responsibilty to keep eye on Convex mirror looking what's around the rear bumper. Also newer trucks have rear camera to allow them to see and back up safetly. (some backup camera have "fish eye" view to see almost everything behind the truck.)


For kids, It is driver's responsibility to check AROUND and UNDER the truck to be sure no kids are are around the truck. If you see kids playing near the truck, you simply tell the kids to move as far as possible. But it's best that you park where you DON'T NEED TO BACK UP unless Absolutely neccessary. So basically, just park that you can drive out one way. Don't park on driveway where you have to backup.. That's the safety. I learned that from USPS driver training class.

I've heard UPS in Lenexa, KS (hub in Lenexa) had serious backup accident that killed the Package Loader employee. The Semi-tractor trailer backed up while the Package Loader got down outside of dock and tried to pick up thing that fell through between trailer and dock. The first Tractor Trailer left while guy was on ground and another Trailer immediately moved in and crushed him and driver didn't hear his scream. The driver lost his job. It was on the newspaper.

My point is that It doesn't make any difference if they are hearing or deaf, they do still makes mistake. UPS don't get the point...

For example:
My deaf friend who was a Omaha Paper employee who drive Semi-Tractor and travel all over across State of Kansas to pickup bundled cardboards. The manager had to let him and one of driver go after 6 months of working because of budget reason. Months later, he visited Omaha Paper Co to find out if they would re-hire him. The manager was glad to see him again and admitted that couple of their drivers that he hired after letting him go wrecks Company's semi-tractor just short period of time. He was disappointed that he should NOT have let my friend go the first place because he admitted that my friend is the best driver he ever have. But he couldn't hire him back cuz the CEO of company doesn't want to pay double monthly payment for insurance (Zurich Insurance Co) cuz he's deaf. So he couldn't hire him back. My friend told me that Zurich Insurance Co is very wrong for charging double on Company cuz of deaf CDL drivers. It's plain wrong!



Catty
 

Calvin

In Hazzard County
Super Moderator
Premium Member
Do they have convex mirror on back of UPS truck (mirror mounted on top side or side of truck)? (similiar to what you saw at Convenience store or Grocery store for clerk to see what their customers are up to at back end of the store) This allow driver to see what's behind the truck while backing up. Do they have two mirrors on driver's left or right side, one large rectangular mirror adjusted that driver can see convex mirror on back side of truck and upper surrounding area and 2nd mirror is a "fish eyed" view mirror to see everything on side of the truck??

Most important thing is to back up SLOWLY!! Not just normal backup. Also must have Emergency flasher on while backing up. It's driver's responsibilty to keep eye on Convex mirror looking what's around the rear bumper. Also newer trucks have rear camera to allow them to see and back up safetly. (some backup camera have "fish eye" view to see almost everything behind the truck.)


For kids, It is driver's responsibility to check AROUND and UNDER the truck to be sure no kids are are around the truck. If you see kids playing near the truck, you simply tell the kids to move as far as possible. But it's best that you park where you DON'T NEED TO BACK UP unless Absolutely neccessary. So basically, just park that you can drive out one way. Don't park on driveway where you have to backup.. That's the safety. I learned that from USPS driver training class.

I've heard UPS in Lenexa, KS (hub in Lenexa) had serious backup accident that killed the Package Loader employee. The Semi-tractor trailer backed up while the Package Loader got down outside of dock and tried to pick up thing that fell through between trailer and dock. The first Tractor Trailer left while guy was on ground and another Trailer immediately moved in and crushed him and driver didn't hear his scream. The driver lost his job. It was on the newspaper.

My point is that It doesn't make any difference if they are hearing or deaf, they do still makes mistake. UPS don't get the point...

For example:
My deaf friend who was a Omaha Paper employee who drive Semi-Tractor and travel all over across State of Kansas to pickup bundled cardboards. The manager had to let him and one of driver go after 6 months of working because of budget reason. Months later, he visited Omaha Paper Co to find out if they would re-hire him. The manager was glad to see him again and admitted that couple of their drivers that he hired after letting him go wrecks Company's semi-tractor just short period of time. He was disappointed that he should NOT have let my friend go the first place because he admitted that my friend is the best driver he ever have. But he couldn't hire him back cuz the CEO of company doesn't want to pay double monthly payment for insurance (Zurich Insurance Co) cuz he's deaf. So he couldn't hire him back. My friend told me that Zurich Insurance Co is very wrong for charging double on Company cuz of deaf CDL drivers. It's plain wrong!



Catty
UPS package trucks have the back up camera installed since about 2002 or 2003, I can't remember. So yes, it is the driver's responsibility to check surrounding the package truck before proceeding. Some children can still sneak and try to get around the truck while UPS drivers are not aware.

Yes, I heard about the accident and that's one of the reason OSHA requires outside UPS yard to wear reflective vests. When something happens, UPS is easy to blame on the employee's part no matter if you're at fault or not. UPS also requires certified employees (non driver) to be allowed in the UPS yard. That is also the reason the rules added because of the accident and OHSA's recommendation. I'm pretty sure UPS got fined by OSHA for the accident.

I agree the compensation and insurance is ridiculous but since accidents happen and they are paying for it. It's not cheap to have that kind of insurance.

You have a :gpost: there Catty :thumb:
 
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