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Driving Safety Campaign

The UK Association of Optometrists (AOP) has just launched a Driving Safety Campaign. As part of the campaign, The AOP are calling for a change to the law in relation to vision and driving.

The Don’t swerve a sight test campaign, which launched on 14 November 2017, is designed to encourage all drivers to have regular sight tests.

With an estimated 2900 road casualties caused by poor vision every year, we’d like to remind all motorists that a sight test, every two years, can help them stay safe and reduce the number of accidents on UK roads.

What standard of vision is needed for driving?

Car drivers (group 1) must be able to read a car number plate from a distance of 20 metres (with glasses or contact lenses if needed). At Aves, we can check this level of vision on our eye test chart very easily and accurately.

Lorry and bus drivers (group 2) must pass a strict medical and vision check when they first apply for their licence, and then every 5 years from age 45 and every year from age 60. Taxi drivers’ vision requirements depend upon the local authority, but are often the same as for group 2 drivers.

Medical conditions

You must tell the DVLA about certain eye and medical conditions. The most common conditions affecting vision for driving are age related macular degeneration (AMD), cataracts, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.

What should I do if I feel my vision is getting worse for driving?

You should come to see your optometrist at Aves who will be able to tell you if you need a new prescription for glasses, whether you need to be referred to see an ophthalmologist (specialist eye doctor), or if you have a condition that should be declared to the DVLA.

Useful links are:

www.gov.uk/driving-eyesight-rules

www.gov.uk/health-conditions-and-driving