Is your summer eyewear roadworthy?
Car windscreens and motorcycle helmets have built-in UV protection, however, many motorists find that wearing sunglasses helps to reduce glare and provide added comfort in strong sunlight.
Look out for the CE or BS EN 1836:2005 marks when choosing your sunglasses – this ensures that they provide a safe level of protection from the sun’s damaging UVA and UVB rays.
The Trust’s top ten tips for ensuring your summer eyewear is roadworthy!
- Visit your optometrist for practical advice on choosing appropriate eyewear for driving in all weather conditions.
- Polarised lenses can help reduce glare from wet or polished road surfaces. However they can also highlight stress patterns in older types of toughened windscreens – which can be distracting and hazardous.
- Make sure your sunglasses are free from marks or scratches as these can distort vision and increase glare.
- Choose a tinted lens with an anti-reflective coating to help minimise glare.
- If you normally wear spectacles for driving make sure you replace them with a pair of prescription sunglasses in sunny conditions. Alternatively, you can use tinted non-prescription clip-on lenses with your regular glasses.
- Avoid sunglasses with really heavy frames. Slim arms provide the greatest all-round vision. Drivers need a visual range of at least 120 degrees.
- Never wear sunglasses with a category four filter lenses. These have an exceptionally dark tint and are unsuitable for driving. By law drivers’ eyewear must have a visible light transmission in excess of eight per cent. CAT 4 lenses only transmit between three – eight per cent.
- The Highway Code states that you should never wear sunglasses or tinted lenses for driving at night or when visibility is poor eg: if it is raining heavily, snowing or foggy.
- Beware of pink or blue tinted lenses when driving as these can potentially distort colours – making driving dangerous. Neutral tints such as grey or brown minimise any potential colour distortion.
- Always remember to remove your sunglasses when travelling from extremely light to dark conditions eg: when driving into a dark tunnel.