Insurance broker McCarron Coates has advised operators and Transport Managers that the driving capabilities of their staff could have been adversely affected during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic if employees have missed a routine eye test.
UK-wide, 30% of urgent eyecare appointments were missed in March and April. 20% were missed in May. In some areas, figures are as high as 50%.
McCarron Coates has suggested that operators should do their own due diligence on eyesight. That should involve insisting that employees have regular eye tests and carrying out checks of their own via the 20m numberplate reading test.
Says Director Ian McCarron: “Fleet managers can easily take control of this issue by asking to see evidence of an eye test taken within the past 12 months, requesting that drivers have one quickly, or if they are reticent to do so because of COVID-19, carrying out their own eye test number plate reading checks.
“They should do this quickly and record and file evidence of their instructions and actions if they wish to avoid any future incident coming back to haunt them. Any serious incident could affect both their company and potentially their personal finances should a failure to comply with legal eyesight requirements be proven.
“The UK eyesight situation could be a ticking timebomb for fleets, particularly given the age of many drivers. The message has to be to act on this and keep your due diligence intact.”