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Motor Vehicles (Driving Licences) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996

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Disabilities prescribed in respect of Group 2 licences

51.—(1) There is prescribed for the purposes of Article 9(2) of the Order as a relevant disability in relation to an applicant for, or a person who holds, a Group 2 licence, the inability to read in good light (with the aid of corrective lenses if necessary) a registration mark fixed to a motor vehicle and containing letters and figures 79.4 millimetres high at a distance of 20.5 metres.

(2) There is also prescribed for the purposes of Article 9(2) of the Order as a relevant disability in relation to a person other than an excepted licence holder who is an applicant for or who holds a Group 2 licence, such abnormality of sight in one or both eyes that he cannot meet the relevant standard of visual acuity.

(3) The relevant standard of visual acuity for the purposes of paragraph (2) means—

(a)in the case of a person who—

(i)was the holder of a Group 2 licence or an obsolete vocational licence upon each relevant date specified in column (1) of the Table, and

(ii)if he is an applicant for a Group 2 licence, satisfies the Department that he has adequate recent driving experience and has not during the period of 10 years immediately before the date of the application been involved in any road accident in which his defective eyesight was a contributory factor,

the standard prescribed in relation to him in column (2) of Table 1;

(b)in the case of a person who—

(i)does not fall within sub-paragraph (a), and

(ii)was the holder of a Group 2 licence upon the relevant date specified in column (1) of Table 2,

the standard prescribed in relation to him in column (2) of Table 2;

(c)in the case of any other person, a standard of visual acuity (with the aid of corrective lenses if necessary) of at least 6/9 in the better eye and at least 6/12 in the worse eye and, if corrective lenses are worn, uncorrected acuity of at least 3/60 in both eyes.

(4) There is prescribed in relation to a person—

(a)to whom paragraph (3)(c) applies; and

(b)who is able to meet the relevant standard of visual acuity prescribed in that sub-paragraph only with the aid of corrective lenses;

poor toleration of the correction made by the lenses.

(5) There is prescribed for the purposes of Article 9(2) of the Order as a relevant disability in relation to a person who is an applicant for or who holds a Group 2 licence, sight in only one eye unless—

(a)he held an obsolete vocational licence on 1st April 1991, the Department who granted the last such licence knew of the disability before 1st January 1991, and—

(i)in a case of a person who also held such a licence on 1st January 1983, the visual acuity in his sighted eye is no worse than 6/12, or

(ii)in any other case, the visual acuity in his sighted eye is no worse than 6/9, and

if he is an applicant for a Group 2 licence, he satisfies the Department that he has had adequate recent driving experience and has not during the period of 10 years immediately before the date of the application been involved in any road accident in which his defective eyesight was a contributory factor; or

(b)the person is an excepted licence holder.

(6) Diabetes requiring insulin treatment is prescribed for the purposes of Article 9(2) of the Order in relation to an applicant for or a person who holds a Group 2 licence unless the person suffering from the disability held an obsolete vocational licence on 1st April 1991 and the Department who granted the last obsolete vocational licence knew of the disability before 1st January 1991.

(7) Liability to seizures arising from a cause other than epilepsy is prescribed for the purposes of Article 9(2) of the Order in relation to an applicant for or a person who holds a Group 2 licence.

(8) Epilepsy is prescribed for the purposes of Article 9(4)(b) of the Order in the case of an applicant for a Group 2 licence suffering from epilepsy satisfies the Department that—

(a)during the period of 10 years immediately preceding the date when the licence is granted—

(i)he has been free from any epileptic attack, and

(ii)he has not required any medication to treat epilepsy; and

(b)that the driving of a vehicle by him in accordance with the licence is not likely to be a danger to the public.

(9) In this regulation—

(a)references to measurements of visual acuity are references to visual acuity measured on the Snellen Scale;

(b)“excepted licence holder” means a person who—

(i)was the holder of a licence authorising the driving of vehicles included in sub-categories C1 and C1 + E (8.25 tonnes) which was in force at a time before 1st January 1997, and

(ii)is an applicant for, or the holder of, a Group 2 licence solely by reason that the licence applied for or held authorises (or would, if granted, authorise) the driving of vehicles included in those sub-categories; and

(c)“obsolete vocational licence” means a licence to drive heavy goods vehicles or public service vehicles which was in force at a time before 1st April 1991 (whether or not it was continued in force by Article 4(2) of the Road Traffic (Amendment) (Northern Ireland) Order 1991(1)).

TABLE 1

Column (1)Column (2)
Person holding Group 2 licence or obsolete vocational licence on—Standard of visual acuity applicable—

1.  1st January 1983 and 1st April 1991

Acuity (with the aid of corrective lenses if necessary) of at least 6/12 in the better eye or at least 6/36 in the worse eye, or uncorrected acuity of at least 3/60 in at least one eye.

2.  1st October 1992, but not on 1st January 1983

Acuity (with the aid of corrective lenses if necessary) of at least 6/9 in the better eye or at least 6/12 in the worse eye, or uncorrected acuity of at least 3/60 in at least one eye.

TABLE 2

Column (1)Column (2)
Person holding Group 2 licence on—Standard of visual acuity applicable—

1.  31st December 1996, but not on 1st October 1992

Acuity (with the aid of corrective lenses if necessary) of at least 6/9 in the better eye and at least 6/12 in the worse eye and, if corrective lenses are needed to meet that standard, uncorrected acuity of at least 3/60 in at least one eye.

2.  1st January1997, but not on 31st December 1996

Acuity (with the aid of corrective lenses if necessary) of at least 6/9 in the better eye and at least 6/12 in the worse eye and, if corrective lenses are needed to meet that standard, uncorrected acuity of at least 3/60 in both eyes.

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