I’m Officially Tone Deaf: Copied: Hearing 391.41(b)(11); From 49 CFR 391.41 Physical Qualifications for Drivers

I’m a little embarrassed about failing the audiometric hearing test. But what about conducting the forced whisper test? Doctor Stephen Drasnin didn’t even bring up that possibility. Do most people fail the whisper test? Is that why he ignored that part of the testing procedure? Or, is he not qualified to perform DOT Regulation tests to begin with?

I am shocked and confused. I have to blame myself for failing, but it seems like some of the blame for my failure should involve not following the full procedure. I don’t know how to bring this issue back up. or should I just drop it and move on now? I have to now assume that I will fail hearing tests in the future, which disqualifies me from all commercial driving. i already have a bad enough criminal record to be prevented from ever working in government. My history is really catching up with me here.


49 CFR 391.41(b)(11) – Summary of Regulation

“A person is physically qualified to drive a commercial motor vehicle if that person —

First perceives a forced whispered voice in the better ear at not less than 5 feet with or without the use of a hearing aid or, if tested by use of an audiometric device, does not have an average hearing loss in the better ear greater than 40 decibels at 500 Hz, 1,000 Hz, and 2,000 Hz with or without a hearing aid when the audiometric device is calibrated to American National Standard (formerly ASA Standard) Z24.5–1951.”

  • The required tests screen for hearing loss in the range of normal conversational tones.
  • Two tests are used to screen hearing: a forced whisper test AND/OR an audiometric test.
    • Either test may be administered first.
    • Test both ears.
    • Administration of the second test may be omitted when the test results of the initial test meet the hearing requirement for that test.
  • Hearing requirements are:
    • First perceive a forced whispered voice, in one ear, at not less than five feet.


    • Have an average hearing loss, in one ear, less than or equal to 40 decibels (dB).
  • When a hearing aid is used to meet the hearing qualification requirement, the hearing aid must be used while driving.
  • Disqualify when both the forced whisper test AND the audiometric test are failed.




Twitter: @acumagnet

Paypal: eauclaire101@yahoo.com


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