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Emphasis on eyesight

When it comes to driving your eyes are the most important sense as 90 per cent of the information you process is visual and therefore fundamental to your decision-making on the road. However, because changes in vision can be slow, you may not notice subtle differences. At present, drivers must take responsibility for their own eye health and regular checks. The guidelines advise an eye test every two years until the age of 70 and annually after this. The law states that all car drivers must be able to read a standard number plate, in good daylight, from a distance of 20 metres – with spectacles or corrective lenses if required. A good stride is approximately one metre, so pace out the distance and check you meet the legal minimum without squinting or screwing up your eyes.

If you’re told you must wear glasses for driving, then make sure you wear them. Failure to do so could invalidate your insurance if you’re involved in an incident. The best advice is always to carry a spare pair, especially on long journeys or driving abroad. In some countries it’s a legal requirement. Remember, the police has the power to require a driver, at any time, to undertake an eyesight test in good daylight. The maximum penalty for driving with defective sight is £1,000, three penalty points or a discretionary disqualification.