§ 44. Miss Quennell
asked the Minister of Transport what steps he is taking to ensure that the eyesight of drivers applying for a driving licence conforms to the prescribed standard.
Mr. Bob Brown
Every applicant for a driving licence is required to make a declaration as to whether he can meet the prescribed eyesight standard. There are penalties for a false declaration. Furthermore it is an offence for anyone to drive a motor vehicle if he cannot, at the time, meet that standard.
§ Miss Quennell
Is not the Joint Parliamentary Secretary aware that there is some evidence and some public concern that, though drivers complete the licensing form asserting that their eyesight conforms to standard, in many cases perhaps it does not, and is it not a bit anomalous that a country which insists that its drivers do not drive if, for one reason, they cannot see, does not make sure they can see at all?
In 1967 there were 65 convictions obtained for false declarations, and in addition there were several convictions for refusing to submit to police requests for eyesight tests.