Employers: sight tests should equal lower premiums

April 2013

Employers across Ireland are calling for insurance premiums to be reduced for drivers with good eyesight. Research conducted by Specsavers Corporate Eyecare* reveals that 71% of employers believe company insurance premiums should go down if they can prove their employees have recently passed a full eye examination and sight test.

Employers would also be more likely to choose an insurance company if eyesight tests were offered as part of the driving insurance policy. 74% of employers said that if their staff were offered a free full eye examination and sight test as part of a company driving insurance policy, this would be a deciding factor in choosing that particular insurance company, as long as the price was still competitive.

The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) makes it clear that when an employee drives for work purposes, it becomes a joint responsibility and an area where employers have a clear duty of care. This includes ensuring that all drivers have eyesight that meets the minimum legal requirements. Specsavers believes it is important, therefore, for employers to consider incorporating eyecare into their health and safety policy for employees who drive for work purposes.

Dona McLafferty, corporate account manager for Specsavers Corporate Eyecare in Ireland says: ‘We believe that drivers who have good eyesight are safer than those who don’t. If insurance companies can encourage employers to test the eyesight of their staff who drive then, this must be a good thing.’

Jon Sellors, group head of thought leadership for leading global insurer, RSA, says: ‘We want safe drivers on the roads, and we believe that good eyesight is imperative for good driving. Fleet operators adopting a systematic approach to driver eye tests will be able to obtain lower insurance premiums, especially when they do this as part of a pro-active approach to fleet risk management.

*Research carried out among 195 companies from the UK and the Republic of Ireland, representing between 167,825 and 355,611 employees, in October 2012.

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