Fleet News

Eyesight tests overlooked

Almost half of company car drivers have not had an eyesight test in the last three years, and nearly 30% have not had their sight tested in the past five years, or at all.

The findings are the result of analysis by E-Training World, which examined data from 340 drivers from some of the UK’s biggest fleet operators who have recently completed its online risk assessment.

And even though eyesight tests are recommended annually, and many company car policies stipulate a yearly examination, only a quarter of drivers surveyed had had an eyesight test within the last 12 months.

“For some reason, many drivers take a very relaxed approach towards their eyesight and think that just because they can see means they can see well enough to be safe on the road,” said Graham Hurdle, managing director of E-Training World.

It is a legal requirement that drivers must be able to read a standard size number plate (with glasses or corrective lenses if necessary) from 20.5 metres or 20 metres where narrower characters are displayed.

“If a serious blameworthy accident occurs and it turns out that that driver was not safe because they could not see, the company directors may find themselves facing some close interrogation from the Health and Safety Executive or even from the police,” warned Mr Hurdle.

The survey also discovered that almost a fifth of drivers suffer aches and pains whilst driving with 17.7% complaining of discomfort, and 16.2% admitting that they hadn’t ever adjusted their head restraint to the correct position to avoid whiplash in the event of a collision.

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