Car drivers must be able to read a car number plate from 20 metres away. You can wear glasses or contact lenses to do this. You should test yourself regularly to make sure your eyesight hasn’t changed.
Lorry and bus drivers (group 2) must have a medical and vision check when they first apply for a lorry or bus licence. After this they should be tested every five years from age 45 and ever year from age 60. They need to meet much more stringent eyesight requirements.
Licensed taxi drivers should check with their local authority to find out the vision requirements locally. These can vary but are usually the same as for lorry and bus drivers.
You can read the DVLA’s driving eyesight rules at www.gov.uk/driving-eyesight-rules
You must tell the DVLA about certain medical and eye conditions. There is a list of conditions that are notifiable and these can be seen here www.gov.uk/driving-medical-conditions
The most common conditions that may affect your eyesight for driving are diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration. If you suffer from any of these you must inform the DVLA. You can either report your condition online or fill in form V1 and send back to the DVLA. The DVLA might send you for a special test to examine your field of vision. Lights are flashed in the edge of your vision to make sure you can see them.
If you feel your eyesight is getting worse, and affecting your driving, you should get an eye test. You might need a new prescription for your glasses or contact lenses, or may be referred to an ophthalmologist.
You should have your eyesight checked regularly and you can also test yourself to make sure you can read a car number plate at 20 metres. If you drive with eyesight below the necessary standard you are driving illegally and it may also mean your motor insurance is invalid. Always make sure you wear any prescribed driving glasses for driving. Don’t take the risk!
If you, or someone you know, has trouble getting to their usual opticians, you can arrange for us to visit for a home eye test. Simply give us a call on 0203 418 8488 or visit http://www.communitycareopticians.co.uk to find out more and make an appointment.