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Relevance of Glare Sensitivity and Impairment of Visual Function Among European Drivers


Dr. TJ Van Der Berg


European Commission, Pearle BV, Vistech GmbH, RAC Automovil Club




European Commission Transport and Road Safety website


  • The occurrence of the most important types of visual impairment in European drivers will
    be determined. The three main visual functions of interest are: visual acuity (the ability
    to distinguish small detail), visual field (the ability to see things from aside), and glare
    sensitivity (degree of blinding when exposed to bright lights in the periphery such as a
    low sun or headlights of oncoming cars at night).

  • These visual functions, in particular glare sensitivity, decline with age. In order to decide if and at what ground (age) to assess specific visual functions for driving licence applications, it is important to determine the prevalence of visual impairment as a function of age.
    Currently there are no demands placed upon the glare sensitivity of drivers, even though
    it is generally accepted as important for traffic safety.

  • The reason is that no standard for such measurement exists. In this project we propose to develop an instrument to measure glare sensitivity for driving licence application and to establish the relation between glare sensitivity and the degree of visual impairment in driving situations.