In Focus: Driving data shows neglect on sun protection

New research shows drivers are not taking road safety as seriously as they should

Recently released Department of Transport (DoT) statistics show there were 33,399 casualties over the past decade to road users where glare from sunlight has been among the contributing factors. On average, there were 653 people being killed or experiencing serious injury each year.

Latest figures for 2021 showed that, of the 2,369 casualties caused by glare, 558 resulted in serious injury, with 19 deaths.

Compounding the DoT findings was data from a new survey carried out by Glasses Direct in partnership with Transitions. A survey of 2,000 UK drivers, half of whom required prescription glasses to drive, found 14% of drivers had been involved in a collision or near-miss on the road because of impaired vision from sun glare.

Nearly three-quarters of respondents said they still regularly wore non-prescription sunglasses to drive during the day, despite 37% admitting they struggled to see clearly when driving with standard glasses. In addition, 17% of drivers confessed they had their last eye test outside of the recommended two-year check-up time period, with another 6% believing it had been five years or more since their last eye test. Just 5% of drivers thought it was especially important to wear sunglasses while driving in winter months.

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