Over 50% of motorists struggle with driving at night

Over half of Britain’s 34 million motorists struggle to see when driving after dark, while many avoid driving at night altogether, a new survey has found. 

Commissioned by the Eyecare Trust, in partnership with insurer Westfield Health, 25% of motorists questioned admitted to having trouble focusing at night, with 43% saying things “looked blurred” when driving after dark. Furthermore, 73% of drivers said that they had experienced visual discomfort from the glare of oncoming headlights. 
The statistics highlighted in the new survey show that it is not surprising that more road accidents occur at night than during the day. In a three-year study by insurance company Zurich Connect, it was found that road accidents increased by 11% in the fortnight after the clocks go back, when compared to the previous two weeks. 
Chair of the Eyecare Trust, Kelly Plahay, explained: “Low light levels at night cause the pupil of the eye to become larger and this can accentuate any focusing errors – no matter how minor – causing blur. At night it’s therefore more important than ever to wear a pair of spectacles or contact lenses with an up-to-date prescription.” 
She added: “More than 90% of the information a driver uses is visual, so ensuring your eyesight is up to scratch is crucial. Most people over the age of about 45 will need some vision correction to see in sharp focus. Ideally everyone should have their eyes checked every two years as your sight can change without it being obvious.”
In addition, the survey found that 31% of motorists refuse to drive at night, while older people often find night driving particularly stressful.
Paul Shires, of Westfield Health, added: “Motorists have a legal requirement to ensure their vision meets certain minimum eyesight standards every time they get behind the wheel. If you’re having trouble focusing or you’re being dazzled by glare from oncoming headlights when driving at night, it could be an indication that your vision is falling below these minimum standards.” 
Night Driving


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