In a bid to improve road safety across the UK, The Guild of Experienced Motorists (GEM) is urging drivers to take regular eye tests, after a survey revealed a disappointing neglect of eye health amongst motorists.
GEM’s study revealed that over 3,000 of its UK members had failed to visit an optician for an eye test for the past three years, while 2.2 per cent of members had not had a test in ten years or more.
The watchdog urged motorists of the importance of ensuring their eyesight is in good order – and the importance of always wearing prescription glasses whilst driving if medically advised to do so.
At current, the maximum penalty for driving with defective sight sits at £1,000 – and British police are free to request a basic ‘number plate’ eye test in good daylight from any driver they pull over.
Police also have the power to issue three penalty points or a discretionary disqualification to offending motorists.
GEM chief executive David Williams MBE said: “GEM has long argued the case for compulsory regular eyesight testing for drivers of all ages.
“The present situation relies on individual drivers taking responsibility for their own eye health.
“Our eyes are the most important sense we have when it comes to driving. Around 90% of the information we process is visual, so what we see is a fundamental element of our decision making”.
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