Business Car Manager news: DVLA has new vision on eye tests

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The Government has done a u-turn on plans to make driver eyesight tests easier for the majority of motorists.

it would reduce the distance required to read a number plate

Proposals last year suggested it would reduce the distance required to read a number plate to 17.5M but after consultations it will stay at 20Metres.

It is tightening up on some vision limits for all motorists and commercial vehicle drivers must have higher standards than previously when the new laws come into force later this year.

In addition, after taking extensive medical opinions, the DVLA is easing the ban on people suffering from epilepsy so long as they meet certain criteria.

There will be some changes for drivers and riders with epilepsy and to the vision standards required for driving. There will be no change to the distance from which a number plate must be read to test visual acuity.

Road Safety Minister, Mike Penning, said, “Road safety is a top priority for the Government and our licensing rules have an important role in ensuring that Britain maintains its position as having some of the safest roads in the world.

“We must make sure that only those who are safe to drive do so, while at the same time avoiding placing unnecessary restrictions on people’s independence.

“We believe that these changes strike the right balance in allowing as many people as possible to drive, without compromising safety.”

Some changes have already been introduced with the vast majority of the new standards expected to come into force later this year. This follows a public consultation that sought views on the implementation of European minimum medical standards for drivers.

While UK standards must be at least at the level of a minimum standard, the UK is not required to relax existing domestic standards where these are justifiably higher than the EU ones.

  • The Public and Commercial Services Union has called upon its members to take part in industrial action from 3 pm onwards on Friday 1 June 2012. As a result, it is possible that DVLA Local Offices may be closed.

A system upgrade on Saturday means only a very limited telephone service will be available from the DVLA.

The compay car policy driving requirements should comply with DVLA standards but eyesight and health must be covered if not already mentioned for certain situations and business car driving advice might also cover rest breaks.


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Conrad Swailes
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