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Visual acuity
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Author:  grandad [ Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:43 am ]
Post subject:  Visual acuity

What level of visual acuity is accepted in your area?

Author:  StuartW [ Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

I would imagine it's either the rules applicable for a standard driving licence, or the Group 2 requirements that most local authorities seem to require these days.

Nothing in principle to stop a licensing authority having even stricter rules than Group 2, or having rules somewhere between the standard for ordinary motorists and the Group 2 requirements, but I wouldn't imagine there are many.

So I suspect it's either the basic rules for a standard driving licence, or the Group 2 requirements:

Visual acuity requirements for standard driving licence wrote:
You must be able to read (with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary) a car number plate made after 1 September 2001 from 20 metres.

You must also meet the minimum eyesight standard for driving by having a visual acuity of at least decimal 0.5 (6/12) measured on the Snellen scale (with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary) using both eyes together or, if you have sight in one eye only, in that eye.


Visual acuity requirements for Group 2 drivers wrote:
You must have a visual acuity at least 0.8 (6/7.5) measured on the Snellen scale in your best eye and at least 0.1 (6/60) on the Snellen scale in the other eye.

You can reach this standard using glasses with a corrective power not more than (+) 8 dioptres, or with contact lenses. There’s no specific limit for the corrective power of contact lenses.


Of course, there are other rules for field of view and suchlike, which are more stringent for Group 2 drivers, as outlined here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/visual-diso ... s-to-drive

Author:  MR T [ Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

grandad wrote:
What level of visual acuity is accepted in your area?

Must have at least one good eye

Author:  StuartW [ Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

MR T wrote:
grandad wrote:
What level of visual acuity is accepted in your area?

Must have at least one good eye


How good though?

For what it's worth, for an ordinary driving licence you would need to read down to line 5 on this chart. Even if you had one bad eye and couldn't read the chart at all with the bad eye I don't think it would matter.

For Group 2, you would need to read down to line 7 with your better eye, but only the top letter (line 1) with your bad eye.

Image

Of course, I doubt if many standard drivers actually have their eyes tested on a chart as part of the driving licence process, and instead they're just tested on the number plate requirement. I suspect the number plate test is a bit easier than the eye chart test though. And if you were borderline with the number plate test I suspect you'd have no chance reading the chart for the Group 2 requirement.

(During a test the chart would be at the other side of the room, although it would be bigger than it appears on your laptop screen. So just because you can read it on your laptop here doesn't mean you would be able to read it at a distance 8) )

Author:  StuartW [ Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:58 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

Incidentally, the numbers are a bit confusing, but it's easier to use the decimal system (1.0, 0.5, 0.1 etc) rather than the other (20/50, 6/12 etc) method.

But they're just fractions expressed in a different way. So 6/12 is the same as 20/40, which as a fraction is obviously 1/2, which is 0.5 as a decimal.

So 20/20 vision is simply 1.0, and as the number gets smaller your acuity gets worse - 0.6 isn't bad, while with 0.1 you can just read the top letter of the chart. 0.05 and you couldn't read any letters on the chart, while 1.2 is slightly better than 20/20.

So for a standard driving licence you only need 0.5 in either eye, which is roughly half way down the eye chart (in the chart above that's the 20/40 line).

For Group 2 you need 0.8 in the better eye, which will be towards the bottom of the eye chart. The bad eye must be at least 0.1, which is the big letter at the top of the chart :shock:

(In the particular chart above 0.1 is 20/200, while 0.8 is 20/25)

However, 0.8 in one eye and 0.1 in other is quite a difference, and I suspect most people's will be closer together. Both 0.7, say, or one is 1.0, while the other 0.8.

Of course, there are different eye charts, but for an ordinary driving licence (0.5) you should be able to read about half way down the chart. For Group 2, the worse eye (0.1) needs to be able to read what would normally be the top letter of the chart. For the better eye (0.8 ) you would need to read to towards the bottom of the chart, but how far down will depend on the individual chart. Most will probably also have rows of letters at 1.0 and 1.2 or whatever, which obviously exceeds the Group 2 standard.

However, if you're getting a proper eye test done at an optometrist then I don't think they use simple charts like the one above anymore, but you'll be asked to read letters of some kind, and the basic principle is the same.

But I suspect GPs and those doing taxi medicals might use the old-fashioned wall chart like the one above.

Author:  edders23 [ Fri Oct 11, 2019 4:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

Quote:
But I suspect GPs and those doing taxi medicals might use the old-fashioned wall chart like the one above.


yup

Author:  cabbyman [ Fri Oct 11, 2019 4:40 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

I do most of my driving by braille! :D

Author:  Sussex [ Fri Oct 11, 2019 5:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

grandad wrote:
What level of visual acuity is accepted in your area?

Got to be Group 2, whatever that is.

Be very surprised if different areas have different levels.

Author:  grandad [ Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

Sussex wrote:
grandad wrote:
What level of visual acuity is accepted in your area?

Got to be Group 2, whatever that is.

Be very surprised if different areas have different levels.

Our policy states a group 2 medical but the sight test for group 2 says you can't be blind in one eye but we have 2 drivers here who only have one eye each and this has been the case since they were kids. We also have one driver who is actually registered as being blind because his near vision is so bad. He even gets a discount from Sky because of this.

Author:  StuartW [ Mon Oct 14, 2019 9:02 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

grandad wrote:
Our policy states a group 2 medical but the sight test for group 2 says you can't be blind in one eye but we have 2 drivers here who only have one eye each and this has been the case since they were kids. We also have one driver who is actually registered as being blind because his near vision is so bad. He even gets a discount from Sky because of this.


As I said a while back with respect to diabetes, suspect LAs will have more leeway with regard to applying the Group 2 standards to cab drivers as opposed to how the DVLA will apply them to bus drivers and truckers. Licensing committees mustn't 'fetter their discretion', and must consider each case on its merits, and all that.

But as with everything else this will depend on each authority. So although I doubt if many authorities will have the in-house expertise to develop their own policies, to a degree they could do this by having individual exceptions to the general rules.

But if one-eyed drivers are being badged by an authority which applies the Group 2 standard then that begs the question why have the Group 2 standard in the first place if such radical exceptions are allowed.

Another possibility is that they've been afforded grandfather rights as drivers badged when the Group 2 standard was adopted.

As for the near-sighted driver, again that seems odd, but near-sighted to me means reading distance, which is irrelevant for driving purposes, as far as I know. So as long as distance vision meets the standard then that would be OK.

Author:  mancityfan [ Fri Oct 18, 2019 9:31 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

Category C1 drivers have an exemption and can renew there licenses. So they can drive with monocular vision.

Author:  Sussex [ Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:11 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Visual acuity

Interesting article in November's PHTM looking at the legal issues relating to 'Medically Fit And Proper'.

https://edition.pagesuite-professional. ... 6cb669c516

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