Eyesight warning for drivers

A MORPETH optician is using Road Safety Week to remind drivers and pedestrians to take care on the roads.

New research, commissioned earlier this year by Brunel University and insurance provider Royal Sun Alliance, has revealed that drivers with poor eyesight are 62 per cent more likely to stray out of their lane when driving.

To enable motorists to check the current condition of their eyes, staff at the Morpeth Specsavers branch on Bridge Street are offering free in-store number plate vision checks tomorrow (Friday).

This quick check is the same as the one that forms part of the driving test and will let them know whether their vision is still fit for the road.

The study also found that drivers who meet the minimum legal eyesight requirement for driving only recognise three-quarters of the road signs they encounter, compared to drivers with good vision.

Graham Ochtman, Director of Specsavers in Morpeth, said: “These new results are proof that many people are taking unnecessary risks on our roads.

“Being perceptive and alert as a driver – especially on congested roads – is essential, so it’s particularly important to follow the advice of the College of Optometrists, which recommends an eye check every two years. Patients with certain conditions may need more frequent examinations.

“Drivers who choose to ignore that advice are putting themselves and others in danger.”

Road Safety Week runs until Sunday. For more information, visit www.roadsafetyweek.org.uk