Wera Hobhouse MP rallies Bath to support petition

 I’m supporting the Driving Blind petition for statutory vision screening for drivers.  Bath and North East Somerset is the launch pad for an entirely new movement of people saying #Say NO to Driving blind, which I take great pride in.

If you care about road safety, please join me in Milsom Street on Friday July 27th, in the area near GAP between 1130 and 1230 am. I’ll be there with the #DrivingBlind campaign team, local supporters and road safety experts and the local media, in order to rally petition support.

Shockingly, most UK drivers can pass their test without having a full examination to prove their eyes are roadworthy and drive for the rest of their lives unpoliced.

We will be urging local residents to sign a petition to demand a political debate on this. We have posters, placards and social media resources to share.  All we need is a bit of your time.

Few of us know that UK regulations for drivers’ eyesight are among the weakest in Europe and rely on self-regulation and reporting.

Yet all we have in the UK is a basic vision test by a non-medically qualified driving test centre employee and this only considers drivers’ ability to read a number plate at a distance of 20 metres. It ignores other essentials such as peripheral vision.

This means that there is no medical rigour to confirm that most drivers are visually fit to drive.  It means that cyclists, pedestrians and motorists who have regular eye-tests are sharing the road with people driving a ton of metal who’ve never given their eyes an MOT.

The World Health Organisation says poor eyesight a key risk factor in road crashes, and yet still, the UK is out of line with many other countries.

We have road safety and ophthalmic experts urging politicians to change the rules.  Now we need the public to join the movement and that starts with Saying NO to #Driving Blind on Twitter and Facebook via @DrivingBlindUK #DrivingBlind

Sign the petition here www.drivingblind.org.uk

Email Kay and Kate at drivingblind@gravitaspr.co.uk with stories of your own experience and offers of support.

Let’s start a new movement right here in Bath!