Ken Phillips: A Deaf Mechanic
August 14, 2019
I’m working on wheel alignment on the front fender Okay… this is camber which is vertical side-to-side tilting
and width adjustment. Now, this is caster which is forward and backward shifting
until it is perfect. And the toe is the directional angle where it is headed
and when adjusted perfectly it would be straight. Now all these three are perfect. Hello, my name is Ken and sign name is K on palm of other hand While I was growing up, when I was a little boy I saw my brother-in-law doing something
and I asked, “What’s that?” Friend was working on car and explained to me “I was working on cleaning the car, cleaning the inside
and vaccuming.” Since then, I became motivated and for four years I went to vocational school at North Carolina School for the Deaf – NCSD Then I graduated and worked at a body shop for 12 years in North Carolina. Then I moved to Michigan and got married. I worked in Michigan
for 9 years. I continued to work at a body shop. I have two children who are Deaf so.. my attention turned to Indiana,
the Indiana School for the Deaf is a better school. So I went and visited.
Then I moved our kids and wife here in Indiana. I continued to work until I found a job here. During the interview, I explained that I could do these things. My boss made sure that I could do these things
then went ahead and hired me. I passed certifications, and I am familiar with
collision and mechanic work. I worked here at Church Brothers for 10 years. Then… now, I’m working, like for example,
these cars here… there are four oranges, okay… When I get here, a car is pulled in,
I tear it out, piece by piece. My markings are in green color. If marked “X” that means it needs replacement. If marked “O” that means the damage needs to be fixed,
and these marks show the damages. Sometimes insurance companies come and take a look. The insurance companies’ markings are orange. Our markings are different. We communicate and agree to work out the details,
to go ahead and fix. Sometimes insurance companies ask me why
it needs replacement, and I explain that the crash was bad, and damage too severe,
so it has to be replaced. This is the old damaged part,
and it has been removed. It has been replaced with a new part installed here. Okay… Insurance company comes here
and discuss with me and my manager. As we meet, they wanted me to fix the rail while me and my manager wanted to replace it. Insurance said no and I still wanted to replace. So I give the insurance company an example. If the rail has been crushed like this can… Insurance wants to fix while I want to replace
so I give this example I crushed this can, look… Insurance wants me to fix this
and make it straight. If there is a second crash… now it is weak. Suppose we want to replace with
a new rail that is strong… Strong. It is strong. That is what I try to explain clearly
to the insurance company. So they agree to go ahead
and replace the rail. We rather it to be strong than doing the repair
because in the second crash it would be weak. I make calls with this, and communicate
through Sorenson VRS. So that we could communicate,
this is cool, it helps me. These are the chemical mix
to match the color. The other guy paints, not me. I work in the body shop Afterwards, the car is put in another area,
the painter cleans and puts on tape. Then he goes to the booth
and pulls in the car. He measures these chemicals to match the color. Then he goes to the booth, I’ll show you… This here the man spray paints to match the paint Then the car is baked in heat to help dry faster.
Then it is finished. Then the car goes to the body shop for assembly
until it is done. Then it goes for a wash, and the customer picks it up. He paints this area to this point to blend. When finished, he uses clearcoat paint
to match the color. That’s it. I work here, I work in the body shop Same with hearing and Deaf.
Deaf can do anything. Like for example, who has a job
at a hospital as EMT, there is Deaf, there are Deaf lawyers, teachers,
construction workers So it is really same –
the Deaf and hearing can do. I hope you enjoyed watching me working here.
Have a good day. Bye.