New Eye Test For Learner Drivers After Shock Findings

Thursday, 29. September 2011

Hi, Graham Hill here, thank you so much for visiting my blog, I hope you learn a lot and as a result end up driving a great car. In order to do so you can get all the information you need by buying my book, An Insider Guide To Car Finance or use me to finance your next car. Happy driving.

Should eye tests be mandatory for drivers? A major insurer thinks so linking eye tests to licence renewals making them mandatory every 10 years. RSA’s ‘Fit to Drive’ campaign examines the link between drivers’ eyesight and road safety and has also asked that new drivers should have an eyesight test when applying for their provisional licence. At the same time they have called for the old number plate test to be scrapped and made more precise with a proper eye test. Drivers were put through a series of tests using Brunel University’s driving simulator.

All drivers had 20:20 vision and were presented with a range of tasks and hazards over a 7 mile route with various aspects of their driving performance recorded.

The participants undertook the study 3 times, once with normal eyesight, the second with what is regarded as a ‘weak’ blur and finally with a ‘strong’ blur.

The weak representing the legal limit and strong slightly less than the legal minimum for driving. The study revealed that visual acuity – the sharpness of vision – had a fundamental impact on a driver’s performance. Adrian Brown, RSA UK Chief Executive said ‘Drivers with poor eyesight struggle to stay in lane, read road signs or keep a consistent speed.’

They also experience a greater metal strain that may be OK on short journeys but could lead to fatigue and possible accidents on long journeys. Brunel University endorsed this view and added that their academic evidence now proves that poor eyesight has a significant impact on driving performance.

A typical Snellen chart. Originally developed ...

Image via Wikipedia

A recent poll also showed that 6 out of 10 MP’s were in favour of mandatory eye tests when driving licences were renewed. 51% also said that they would support legislation that made eyesight checking mandatory when people take driving tests. Do you have any views on this? Please share them. By Graham Hill

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One Response to “New Eye Test For Learner Drivers After Shock Findings”



  1. Young Driver Says:

    It is important for learner drivers to ensure that their eyesight is fine, or corrected with glasses / contact lenses before learning to drive. The risks are just not worth it… however, the suggestion of forcing mandatory tests might be a little heavy handed.

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