Sun's Distraction Can Hinder Labor Day Travel

Sun's Distraction Can Hinder Labor Day Travel

Safe Driving Recommendations from The Vision Council

WASHINGTON, DC (August 24, 2011) - Texting, talking, entertaining and navigating - drivers this Labor Day weekend will face record distractions while on the road. One of the biggest forgotten dangers is the threat of the sun's glare and UV rays to drivers' vision. The Vision Council urges holiday travelers to remember to utilize UV protective eyewear as a part of safe driving habits.

This Labor Day weekend, as the unofficial end to summer, UVA and UVB rays reaching the earth's surface will still be at their peak. UV radiation poses a critical risk to unprotected eyes, especially for those behind the wheel. UV rays can reflect off surfaces like concrete, glass and other automobiles, causing drivers to experience significant interference with their vision. The time of year, in addition to increased holiday traffic can exacerbate the chance of sun glare interfering with driving ability. While these hazards are serious, the solution is simple; invest in a pair of sunglasses before hitting the road.

We're constantly reminded to avoid distractions like cell phones and music while driving. But we're missing a big component, said Ed Greene, CEO of The Vision Council. The threat the sun poses to eyesight is real and it affects drivers every day. Safe driving habits need to include the use of UV protective eyewear and glare reducing lenses such as anti-reflective or polarized to help curb this distraction.

Proper eyewear can effectively mitigate the issue of sun glare and keep drivers focused on the road. Polarized glasses in particular are designed to reduce glare and reflection, both in the car and outdoors.

To help drivers prepare their eyes for Labor Day travel, The Vision Council offers the following tips:

  • Purchase eyewear from a reputable retailer. Knowledgeable retailers will meet frame and lens safety criteria set by the American National Standards Institute.
  • Insist on shades with protection from both UVA and UVB rays. Both kinds of UV radiation can damage eyes.
  • Wear anti-reflective lenses to eliminate lens glare. Anti-reflective lenses act to improve vision by increasing the amount of light that reaches the eye and by reducing harmful glare due to reflections off the back surfaces of lenses.
  • Take breaks when driving long distances. Allowing eyes to relax after intense focus can help reduce eye strain and fatigue.
  • Go for comfort. Eyewear that doesn't feel right is less likely to get worn.
  • Find the right pair(s) of UV protective eyewear for the activities you do. Know that different lenses and frames may be suited to various types of activities. For instance, yellow- and brown-tinted lenses are best for water sports; gray, brown and amber are great for field sports; and mirror coatings work well for downhill skiing and snowboarding. Click here for more on lens color.
  • Pick a design that works. Wraparound glasses or glasses with larger template pieces help block the sun from side angles.

For more information about vision and safe driving, or to download an iPhone PackList app to help plan for your holiday travel, visit

About The Vision Council

Serving as the global voice for vision care products and services, The Vision Council represents the manufacturers and suppliers of the optical industry through education, advocacy and consumer outreach. By sharing the latest in eyewear trends, advances in technology and advice from eyewear experts, The Vision Council serves as a resource to the public looking to learn more about options in eyeglasses and sunglasses.