Driving with sunglasses without a good level of UV protection could cause major safety issues for road users who may be blinded while behind the wheel. Although there is no law regarding what sunglasses drivers can or cannot wear, rule 237 of the Highway Code warns drivers about the risks of being dazzled by bright sunlight.
- Sun glare could see motorists hit with fine
The Code warns drivers who are dazzled by the light to slow down or stop and failing to follow this advice could lead to consequences.
Driving a vehicle without being able to see the road is a major safety risk and road users could miss key road hazards.
If their driving standards have been dramatically reduced, police officers may decide to stop a driver and issue charges for careless driving.
This can land road users with a £100 on the spot fine and up to three penalty points on their driving licence.
However, if road users refuse to pay the charge or a case is sent to court, motorists could be issued a £2,500 fine and up to nine penalty points.
In severe cases road users may even be issued charges for dangerous driving which could see fines rise up to £5,000.
Sunglasses are designed to protect your eye from the bright effects of the sun although some items do this better than others.
Last year, a survey by Direct Line found more than one third of sunglasses purchased from beachside sellers around the world offered zero UV protection.
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Analysis found examples of many models which advertised that they offered UV protection when they didn’t.
Research found nine million people purchase sunglasses without checking whether they offer UV protection despite the major risks.
In another blow, researchers found that over half a million UK road users ditched their prescription lenses for ordinary sunglasses when driving in bright light.
However, these sunglasses are not fitted with a road user’s prescription meaning they may have no vision of the road or any hazards.
- Motorists could be fined up to £5,000 for driving in hot weather
Under these cirunmaces, road users could fail the government’s standard of vision for driving test which could see drivers prosecuted.
Half a million road users do not wear their prescription lenses in sunny weather and also do not wear sunglasses.
Not wearing glasses at all could pose a safety risk as road users are offered no protection from being dazzled by the sun.
Steve Barrett, head of motor insurance at Direct Line has warned drivers pose a “real danger” to the safety of themselves and other road users by not wearing appropriate sunglasses.
He said: ““We urge all motorists to wear appropriate eye protection and prescribed lenses including prescription sunglasses whilst driving.
“If people cannot see to drive safely, either through not wearing the correct prescription lenses or sunglasses to protect from glare, they pose a real danger to themselves and everyone else on our roads.”
The AA has warned the responsibility is on the driver to make sure they have good road vision.
They say drivers who are not protected from the sun could invalidate their car insurance in the event of an accident.
The AA says drivers should always keep a spare pair of driving sunglasses in their car at all times.
They have also urged motorists to discuss options for sun and glare protection with their optician and consider buying specialist driving lenses or tints.
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