BBC Wales: Drivers should have mandatory eyesight test, says top optician

18 September 2018
Source: BBC Wales

Motorists should have to pass mandatory sight tests to stop people with dangerously poor eyesight driving, a top optician has said.

It comes after a father was killed by a driver who defied an optician’s warning to stay off the road in 2015.

Chief of Optometry Wales Sali Davies, said opticians are being put in an “uncomfortable” position as it is up to patients to self-refer to the DVLA.

The optical health regulator said it was considering new guidance.

The UK’s legal driving standard is to read a car number plate – with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary – from 20 metres.

In most cases, doctors and opticians advise the driver not to get behind the wheel, but it is the duty of the driver to inform the DVLA their eyesight is no longer good enough to drive safely.

She spoke to BBC Wales after three police forces in England announced plans to test every motorist they stop in a bid to clamp down on drivers with defective eyesight.

Welsh police forces said officers regularly conducted roadside eyesight tests on motorists and have the power to immediately ban people from driving.

But only North Wales Police has carried out a special operation specifically to test drivers’ eyesight.

Read the full story on the BBC Wales Website

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