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Home > Medical Examination > Can one who is deaf be a pilot?
Can one who is deaf be a pilot?
Pilot Career - Medical Examination
Tuesday, 15 November 2005 17:58

Hi Capt Lim,

I am profoundly deaf since I was 5. I am now 36 years old. I have just learned that a deaf can obtain a private license, or even commercial license.

My question is: for pilot career, what kind of job can a deaf pilot do for the corporate world?

I was hoping that I could fly packages to rural airport for FedEX or UPS or something like that. What is that position called?

Happy flying,


Hi Erik,

While a deaf is not barred from flying, they are restricted to a special pilot*s certificate with this endorsement, "Not Valid for Flights Requiring the Use of Radio?.

In the US, the FAA can grant you a pilot certificate in one of the five categories of aircraft: airplane, rotorcraft, glider, powered-lift, or lighter-than-air.

FAA FAQ states that a deaf pilot can obtain a student pilot certificate, recreational pilot certificate, private pilot certificate, and, on a limited basis, a commercial pilot certificate, for example, agricultural aircraft operations, banner towing operations, or any operation which does not require radio communication. With new interface technology for incockpit receipt of weather information and digital communication, additional pilot certificates may be available to deaf pilots in the future.

So, as you can see, at the moment, you will not be able to pass a full Class I Medical certificate in order to fly commercially with any airlines as a cargo pilot for FedEX, UPS or even in the corporate operations. You may however fly on a limited basis, as a crop duster, some banner towing operations or any operations that does not require you to use a radio transmitter or receiver.

If you fly for FedEx or UPS, you would be known as a cargo pilot but you will still operate under the same license as a normal passenger pilot that require a Class 1 Medical Certificate.


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Comments (3)

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hi capt lim , Low-rated comment [Show]
hey, my name is ruslan and I'am deaf is can take it license pilot.
commercial pilot license a job with an airline?
one last thing who is deaf can be to speaking skill for the job airline.
ruslan , 13 Mar, 2009
I'm in my ears are both deaf so, as I'm can using for aid hearing, and me will be to spreak skilling. who is deaf job with an airline pilot how to communication radio use hear sound and both the sentence is technical on the instructor panel.
sincerely Ruslan dudko
Ruslan dudko , 05 Apr, 2009

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