Why wearing sunglasses while driving could land you with a large fine

Across the UK, many people have been making the most of the balmy weather of the last few days.

Monday, 7th May 2018, 1:03 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 5:38 pm

From sunbathing in parks to relaxing in beer gardens, sunglasses became essential attire.

But what may come as a surprise to many is that wearing shades behind the wheel of your car could land you in hot water.

While avoiding glare is advisable and the Highway Code states you must slow down or pull over if you’re dazzled by bright sunlight, it is in fact illegal to wear some types of sunglasses while driving.

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Picture: Getty

There are two essential requirements for lenses to be used for driving – vision must remain clear, and sufficient light to let you see properly must get to your eyes.

Enough light?

However, some sunglasses that are sold for general usecan be too dark or unsuitable for driving.

Sun lenses for driving fall into two main categories – ‘fixed’ and ‘variable’ tint.

Most sunglasses will be category two – meaning they filter between 18 and 43 per cent of light and are suitable for driving.

However, Class 4 sunglasses will filter between 3 and 8 percent of light and are to be used for exceptionally bright sunlight.

Illegal types

If you have these type of sunglasses, then it is illegal to use them while driving.

According to the AA: ‘Filter category 4 lenses only transmit between 3% and 8% of light and are not suitable for driving at any time. Sunglasses with these lenses should, by law, be labelled ‘Not suitable for driving and road use’.’

The Highway Code states, you must slow down or pull over if you’re dazzled by bright sunlight.