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DEAF-L: Auto Equipment for Deaf/HOH

Key Words: Deaf Education information, Technologies for Deaf/HH

Subj: Fw: NVRC 97-445: Auto Equipment for Deaf/HOH
Date: 97-03-26 21:37:20 EST
From: Bassbear@EROLS.COM (Bobby Clarke)
Sender: DEAF-L@SIU.EDU (Deaf List)
Reply-to: DEAF-L@SIU.EDU (Deaf List)
To: DEAF-L@SIU.EDU (Multiple recipients of list DEAF-L)

Automakers will help customers pay for some costs of adapting new vehicles with equipment and conveniences for drivers and passengers, but only one offers equipment for folks who are deaf and hard of hearing.

* General Motors Corp. has been offering a Mobility Program since 1991 and offers the most generous benefits. Buyers of any new GM vehicle get reimbursed for up to $1,000 for what the company calls ``mobility adaptive equipment.''

Last year, GM added ``alerting devices'' to the list of eligible equipment. The devices include an enhanced turn signal reminder that flashes and sounds an increasingly louder tone the longer the signal remains on. Another alerting device blinks red lights whenever its microphone detects an approaching emergency vehicle siren.

* Chrysler Corp. has been offering benefits since 1987 through its Automobility Program. Buyers of new, full-size Ram Vans and Ram Wagons can receive up to $1,000; buyers of all other new Chrysler vehicles are eligible for $750 maximum.

* Ford Motor Co. has been offering a Mobility Motoring Program since 1992. Ford caps reimbursements at $750, but adds two other benefits: free membership in its 24-hour roadside assistance program for the duration of the vehicle's regular warranty; and a free cellular phone for buyers willing to pay the monthly services charges and agree to a minimum four-month subscription.

All these programs cover items such as wheelchair lifts, scooter lifts, grab bars, hand straps and hand controls. GM also reimburses for such things as special seats for buyers with chronic pain or discomfort.

GMAC, the financing arm of General Motors, will finance the cost of this equipment with a long-term loan to make it more affordable.

The Associated Press reports that among foreign automakers, only Volvo offers a factory-backed financial aid program. It also reimburses car buyers up to $1,000.

Thanks to George Bolash for this information.

Uploaded by: BJ Lawrence/ Kent State University/ Deafed Major