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WATCH: Motorist (87), caught driving wrong way onto main road, fails eye test - why it's important to have your eyesight properly tested

2018-09-03 11:37

Robin Classen

Driver, 87, fails eye test after driving wrong way

Image: iStock

  Video

Dash-cam footage captured an extreme head-on collision - a Mazda, driving on the wrong side of the road, crashes into a fellow road user.

An 87-year-old motorist was caught on camera driving the wrong way onto a main road. The pensioner narrowly avoids colliding with a police car in the process.

According to Surrey police, the Honda Jazz driver made a wrong turn and continued driving towards vehicles along a main road before coming to a halt.

READ: Looking forward: 'Five years is too long a time' for SA motorists to have their next eye test

According to Lauren Slade from ModernEyes optometristmany South Africans see their five-yearly vision screening at the traffic department as the benchmark of eye care.

These visual requirements, according to the law, consist of the following:

• Visual Acuity testing: determines how well you can see an object and the underlying details from a specific distance.

• Visual field testing: detects dysfunction in central and peripheral vision which may be caused by various medical conditions such as glaucoma, stroke, brain tumours or other neurological deficits.

Slade says relying on the traffic department to detect possible visual problems is something one should never consider:The minimal screening tests are not sufficient to detect many eye conditions, nor are the department of transport’s employees trained to test vision efficiently or to give advice."

Legally, to pass your vision test for a driving licence, you need a minimum of 20/40 (or 6/12) in each eye: "Yet, visual acuity isn’t measured, so you could have 20/20 vision or 20/40 vision and still pass. A person with 20/40 vision can see a letter at 20 feet the size that someone with 20/20 vision can see at 40 feet.

"This means that someone who is legally adequate at the licensing department – needs to be half the distance closer to see clearly compared to someone with 20/20.

"Definitely not the person you want behind you on the highway doing 120km/h. This is one reason why a licence vision screening is a very poor substitute for a comprehensive eye exam."

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