Head-mounted device allows deaf cyclists to ‘feel’ surrounding traffic

Deaf biker/cyclist demonstrating the device located on back of his head

A new device that helps deaf cyclists pinpoint the location of undetected passing traffic has been unveiled by a student from Brunel Design School.

Industrial designer Divine Okoroji, who was born deaf in one ear, said he hopes the device will give the hard of hearing more confidence on their bike.

“I never really used to cycle on the road,” said Okoroji, 22, from London. “I felt like I was always getting myself into positions where I was having near-misses, and that I’d probably be more confident and aware on the road if I could hear better.”

The slickly-designed device – SONEAR – uses ultrasonic sensors to monitor traffic, letting the user know when a vehicle is in their proximity by delivering small vibrations to the back of their head. As cars get closer, the tingling vibration increases, allowing the cyclist to ‘feel’ the car’s proximity to them.

Due to be exhibited at Made in Brunel at London’s Oxo Tower, the flagship design show for students from Brunel Design School, Okoroji hopes that his device can help deaf people participate in cycling’s ‘bike boom’ that first began with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read on at https://www.brunel.ac.uk/news-and-events/news/articles/%EF%BB%BF-Head-mounted-device-allows-deaf-cyclists-to-‘feel’-surrounding-traffic.

How Two Deaf Mountaineers Thrive on High Peaks

Scott Lehmann and Shayna Unger converse in ASL on a snow covered mountain

Communication can be the difference between life and death in mountaineering. Climbers Scott Lehmann and Shayna Unger know that as well as anyone.

During their 2018 ascent of Argentina’s 22,837-foot Aconcagua, climbers Scott Lehmann, 33, and Shayna Unger, 30, carried pads of paper and pens in their pockets. As they stayed at Camp 2 at 18,000 feet and awaited good weather, the two wrote down questions on the pad about the forecast and about route conditions, and then showed their written inquiries to other climbers they met. It was a cumbersome means of communication, but it was the best way for Lehmann and Unger to obtain the information, since both climbers are deaf.

Other climbers proved to be unhelpful and indecisive in answering their inquiries—Lehmann and Unger believe the climbers didn’t want to be responsible for their safety on the peak. So, the two tried a different strategy. They awoke one morning at 4 A.M., unzipped the flap of their tent, and stared out into the darkness to see if other teams were preparing to push for the summit. Every few hours, they peeked their heads out of the tent, searching the camp for headlamps. Eventually, after two nights of staring into the dark pre-dawn sky, Lehmann and Unger saw lights flickering in a neighboring tent and then climbers emerging to move up the mountain. They knew it was time to climb.

Read on at https://www.outsideonline.com/outdoor-adventure/climbing/deaf-climbing-couple.

Rehoboth Beach Museum ASL Tour (October 1, 2022)

Rehoboth Beach Historical Society Museum logo with caption - 'Dive into history'

The Rehoboth Beach Museum invites deaf and hard of hearing visitors to join a museum docent and an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter for a tour of our current exhibits. Visitors will explore both permanent exhibits and our new seasonal showcase, the Needlework Exhibition. The tour is free with registration.

More information and to register for the tour – https://rehobothbeachmuseum.org/index.php/calendar/121-asl-guided-tour-2/2022-10-01-10-00.

– Thanks to Mariella Trosko and DDSC for sharing the event!


Revolution Signs: Programs in American Sign Language (Aug. 21, 2022)

tour discussion on top of a old boat with cannons

Join us Sunday, Aug. 21 for a day of programs, tours, and talks translated into American Sign Language (ASL). ASL interpreters will accompany Museum guides on talks and tours to share narratives and observations and to facilitate question and answer sessions. Tickets include Museum admission, an ASL-interpreted Museum highlights tour beginning at 11:30 a.m. or 12:45 p.m., an ASL-interpreted showing of Washington’s War Tent at 1 p.m., and an ASL-interpreted 20-minute Meet James Forten first-person theatrical performance.

For questions, please contact Meg Bowersox, Manager of Gallery Interpretation, at mbowersox@amrevmuseum.org.

Revolution Signs is sponsored by The Gordon and Llura Gund Foundation.

More information and ticket purchases at https://www.amrevmuseum.org/events/revolution-signs-programs-in-american-sign-language?blm_aid=245167120.

Maryland DeafBlind Training in Salisbury (Aug. 10, 2022)

tactile sign language is shown with two hands touching each other

Interested in earning a little extra income while providing a worthwhile service to individuals of Maryland’s Deafblind community?

Become a Communication Facilitator (CF)!

The Maryland Accessible Telecommunication Program is hosting an information and training event at Deaf Independent Living Association (DILA), 806 Snow Hill Road, Salisbury, MD Wednesday August 10th.

Join us in-person or virtually.

Trainer Eddie Martinez and MAT manager, Kevin Steffy will provide information from 11 to 12:30 and more detailed training from 1 to 2.

For a Zoom link, please RSVP by Tuesday August 9th by emailing Kevin Steffy at kevin.steffy@maryland.gov. You can also VP Kevin at 410-246-4418 for more information.

And don’t forget –

we will be on the north beach at Indian River Inlet State Park for

Deaf Community Surf Day

August 11th all day with surf’s up noon to 3!

So, if you can’t make the 10th but are interested, talk to us then!


DeafBlind training in MD 8.10.2022 flyer

Communication Facilitator explained

– Thanks to Maryland Accessible Telecommunication Program


ASL Scuba Diving classes

Interested in learning scuba diving?? Not sure? Have questions and want to talk with me or Scuba World? Feel free to DM me or call the Scuba World at 302-697-2882. It will be one of your best lifetime experiences!

We have 2 open water certification classes using ASL (end of August and September). If the dates do not work for you, please do let me know and we will have more offerings in near future.

Several epic facts that all divers should know: 1. Sharks ARE friendly beasts (watch shark week this week on the discovery channel!). 2. Ocean is the last frontier. 3. Water absorbs light. 4. Recreational diving is limited to 130 feet. 5. Soon, ocean will contain plastic more than fish.

SCUBA World Inc Aqua Hands, LLC PADI

– thanks to Mindi Failing

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