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Class 2 Medical: Two Sets of Specs for Assessment

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Class 2 Medical: Two Sets of Specs for Assessment

Old 25th Sep 2017, 00:02
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Class 2 Medical: Two Sets of Specs for Assessment

Hi There! First post and looking forward to using this great resource some more.

I'm looking to start towards RPL then PPL. However, I want to get my medical out of the way first before I spend a lot of money on training.

I wear specs and have been told I need to bring two pairs of glasses to my CASA Class 2 medical. I understand you require a spare when flying but didn't think I would need to present both pairs at the medical.

My prescription is pretty specialised (read expensive) so I was only planning on buying another set of specs once I was told I was OK from a medical perspective since I have no need for a spare in my daily life.

Can anybody confirm this is the requirement or whether the receptionist just got it wrong? I thought they were testing my eyesight, not my glasses!

Appreciate any advice you guys have!

Thanks,
Watson
Econwatson is offline  
Old 25th Sep 2017, 00:25
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You local optometrist should be able to tell you if you will pass. You should also be able to try some cheaper plair prescriptions to see if these allow you pass. This will tell you if you can use them for a backup pair.

You can read the DAME handbook on the CASA w3 site which will have the vision standards.



Originally Posted by Econwatson View Post
Hi There! First post and looking forward to using this great resource some more.

I'm looking to start towards RPL then PPL. However, I want to get my medical out of the way first before I spend a lot of money on training.

I wear specs and have been told I need to bring two pairs of glasses to my CASA Class 2 medical. I understand you require a spare when flying but didn't think I would need to present both pairs at the medical.

My prescription is pretty specialised (read expensive) so I was only planning on buying another set of specs once I was told I was OK from a medical perspective since I have no need for a spare in my daily life.

Can anybody confirm this is the requirement or whether the receptionist just got it wrong? I thought they were testing my eyesight, not my glasses!

Appreciate any advice you guys have!

Thanks,
Watson
Old Akro is offline  
Old 25th Sep 2017, 00:45
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Canberra ACT Australia
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Can anybody confirm this is the requirement or whether the receptionist just got it wrong? I thought they were testing my eyesight, not my glasses!
I confirm that it is now, unfortunately, a requirement.

My views on the requirement are at pages 20-21 (here: https://www.casa.gov.au/file/183126/...token=p6kNtcdK ) of my submission in response to CASA's medical certification DP.
Clinton McKenzie is offline  
Old 25th Sep 2017, 00:47
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Thanks for the response, I really appreciate it.

Because I have bifocals and my script is quite high, everything pretty much needs to be custom unfortunately.

I do have a need in my life for a spare pair of sunglasses and apparently they can be used as a backup so this might be an option. I also considered transition lenses, but just called AvMed to ask about whether they are allowed or not and the rep said they weren't. However I've seen other topics where pilots have been discussing using them!

Originally Posted by Old Akro View Post
You local optometrist should be able to tell you if you will pass. You should also be able to try some cheaper plair prescriptions to see if these allow you pass. This will tell you if you can use them for a backup pair.

You can read the DAME handbook on the CASA w3 site which will have the vision standards.
Econwatson is offline  
Old 25th Sep 2017, 01:07
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The receptionist is merely passing on what is required at renewal time. People forget to bring in their spare glasses and this holds up the medical renewal.

When you go for your first medical, some may not be aware they even need glasses. That's what the medical is for. A fact finding mission for you and the DAME.

If you do need vision correction as determined by the DAME, it will be stated on your medical certificate you get back from CASA. The requirement to carry spare glasses is NOT stated on your medical certificate.
That little gem is found in CASR 67.20 (Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 Volume 2).
Capt Fathom is offline  
Old 25th Sep 2017, 01:29
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It is a crock of shit.

You need a spare pair of spectacles to exercise the privileges of your licence. The requirement to take them to your medical is because some numpty in casa medical decided it would be a good idea to take them to make sure you had two pairs, that is all.

We have not had a pilot incapacitated as a result of spectacle failure since pontious was a cadet pilot, so this is just more australian nanny state bullshit.

I have worn glasses since I was about 10 and have never had to take a second pair to a medical im 30 odd years, so this is just a self justification exercise from casa.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 02:03
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I've read that the most common cause of pilot incapacitation is.... choking.

I can see that conceivably you could drop your glasses behind the seat or out the door depending on the aircraft type. It's a risk.... but how much of a risk? There's lots of other things you could do too, but hard to draw a line eh.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 02:16
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I completed my assessments last month. I actually went to the Ophthalmologist before the DAME who did not request to see both pairs of glasses or even mentioned it. When it came time for the rest of my medical, he skipped over the vision part except colour vision as the details had already been entered.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 02:28
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As pilots we manage risk every day, thats what we do.

Over the past few years, in particular, the nanny state has really cranked it up and now we have the security theatre managing the risk of terrorism, we have part 61 managing the risk of someone actually getting something productive done, we have casa medical managing the risk of someone actually being able to earn a living.

As a society we appear to have abrogated our rights and accepted that we need to be wrapped in a shroud of protective legislation, oddly I feel less protected.

There are countries and jurisdictions where there is nowhere near enough protections, and that is equally as bad - i personally think we have gone too far the other way.

Somewhere in the middle would be nice, where there are actually consequences associated with personal actions and people hopefully learn from their mistakes and the mistakes of others - not the current situation where mistakes and errors are legislated out of existance.

PS Clinton, I liked your response to the discussion paper, well done
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 02:44
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It is a crock of shit.
Sure is. I have been flying for 45 years and have NEVER used the spare set. Up till recently I just kept the most recently replaced set somewhere in the cockpit where they couldn't move and I could easily grope for them should that one really, really bad bump (no not my landings) remove my glasses so far away I couldn't retrieve them. Surely the old pair should be adequate to get you home in the highly unlikely case that you ever needed them.

While on the subject of eye tests the last one I did I nearly failed the test that has numbers and letters embedded in various pixilated colours.This has never happened before.
These days I wear those smart glasses that change colour to protect the eyes in bright light. Does anyone know if these types of glasses could in any way affect the ability to differentiate the numbers from the mess of colours on the test charts. Alternatively does old age have any effect on ability to do those tests?
rutan around is offline  
Old 25th Sep 2017, 03:08
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Alternatively does old age have any effect on ability to do those tests?
I think it does, and that is why CASA have asked DAME's to dust off their Colour Books! I just did one. My DAME also got me to read with my spare pair of glasses. He has been doing my medicals for years and normally doesn't submit easily to CASA BS.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 04:06
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Alternatively does old age have any effect on ability to do those tests?
Vision inexorably deteriorates with age. Your optometrist can draw you the graph.

I am above the curve for my age and can pass the CASA vision requirements without glasses when I'm in a well lit medical consulting room. But I know as soon as the light deteriorates, that I struggle to read easily - ie an IFR approach in cloud. Therefore, I have a $20 pair of chemist reading glasses in my flight bag as well as my prescription reading glasses that I use intermittently for detailed reading. I'm not required to do this, but its safer and I feel more comfortable.

The spare pair don't need to be perfect, just adequate to pass the test. Thus they can be an old pair or, if the cheap Chemist glasses do it, it can be them. Primarily you only need to read something on your lap or on the instrument panel in front of you.

There's a fair chance your local optometrist will bulk bill you on medicare. There's also a fair chance he'll understand the CASA requirement (which is not as strict as some others). Go and see the optometrist. Take whatever old glasses you have, or borrow some chemist glasses and try them out.

Its easy to scoff at the vision requirement, and for a J3 Cub its probably overkill. But trying to read a map in difficult conditions, or an IFR approach plate in cloud or (as I have done) read through an aircraft flight manual after declaring an emergency and being able to read & comprehend clearly takes on new importance.

Once you know what your vision is, then go to your friendly neighborhood DAME armed with the answers before he submits anything to the unfriendly, untrustworthy, irrational, vindictive CASA Avmed.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 04:17
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No one's scoffing at the principle of a vision requirement.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 04:35
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Thanks for all your advice guys.

Since I've emigrated from the UK my old specs are in a box somewhere over there, or it wouldn't be much of an issue.

I went to an optometrist who is also a DAO who said I would be all good for eyesight. Just frustrating that I will have to wait for an extra pair of glasses before I can do my medical.

Looking at ordering some transitions but I called Avmed today who said CASA don't like them because they "don't adjust quickly enough to light conditions". Surely they adjust quicker than taking one pair of glasses off and putting another set on?! I've also seen some topics with pilots discussing them and having good success. Perhaps another conversation with the DAO is in order.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 04:40
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Yes, to clarify, i have no issues with carrying two pairs of specs, just the requirement to prove how trustworthy i am by taking both of them to my medical
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 04:55
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You guys with glasses have it easy. I wear leave in contacts, 30 days at a time, $50 per eye. With good management I stretch their use to 60 days usually.

When I go in I have to also take my spare set of glasses. I do one test with contacts in, one with them out, and then one wearing the glasses.

At -2.75 I can pretty well tell them what the result with be without either contacts or glasses in, what is the point of that test.

I could also just have borrowed a mates set of glasses for the test and then given them back and flown without them, so what is the desire to have to see them.

Once I have taken the contacts out, there goes $100 bucks down the drain on top of all the costs of the medical, as I can't put them back in unless I take solution etc to put them in at the doctors.

What a pain in the....
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 06:02
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I've never taken two pairs of glasses for a medical.

As someone said, you require two pairs while exercising the privileges of your licence.

Sounds like lowly admin staff gone mad.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 06:25
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Originally Posted by Acrosport II View Post
I've never taken two pairs of glasses for a medical.

As someone said, you require two pairs while exercising the privileges of your licence.

Sounds like lowly admin staff gone mad.
No, it is a CASA Av Med requirement that you present with 2 pairs of specs for the medical. If you do not have them both on arrival, instruction is that DAME cannot proceed with the examination and you will be sent away. This is not the fault of the DAME.
So every DAME has been advised to get their booking staff to very clearly tell the person on the phone to bring in 2 pairs till at least enough time has elapsed for all current pilots/ATC to have been through it once and thus know about the new requirement.
Not "lowly admin staff" at either doctors or CASA gone mad.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 08:38
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Yes my DAME made it quite clear 2 medicals ago that I had to bring the 2nd pair and reiterated it at the last medical in May. At both medicals I was put through the rigorous testing procedure with my normal glasses, and then had to go through the whole thing again with the spare pair. Massive WOFTAM. Yes, I need vision correction to fly. No, I don't need to be tested twice to confirm this fact!


Clinton nailed it in his submission (well done sir).


Where is the evidence of any accident or incident that was a result of somebody's glasses mysteriously disintegrating in flight..?? Is there a record of anything that has caused CASA to adopt this..?


If you're in turbulence that is severe enough to knock the glasses off your head, I'd be more worried about the aircraft disintegrating than my glasses!!


I've been wearing glasses for well over 30yrs and have NEVER had a situation whereby I had to reach for the spare pair due to the main pair failing in some way. And I can't think of any situation that could arise in flight that would. Maybe others could enlighten me.


Then there's the expense of maintaining 2 identical sets. If you need full blown prescription glasses they are bloody expensive. Yes, you can put the eye test on Medicare, but the actual glasses are where they get you. Hundreds of $$ to upgrade the lenses, even if you re-use the same frames. And then if you want prescription sunglasses as well....


How's this for a scenario - somehow my main pair of glasses snap in half and fall off my face. Likelihood..? Infinitesimally small. I reach for my flight bag and pull out the 2nd pair. As I'm putting them on, they also snap in half. Likelihood..? About the same as before. Maybe I should be carrying a 3rd pair..?? Ridiculous I know, but no more so than the original rule.
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Old 25th Sep 2017, 08:57
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Originally Posted by Snakecharma View Post
Yes, to clarify, i have no issues with carrying two pairs of specs, just the requirement to prove how trustworthy i am by taking both of them to my medical
Totally agree.

I've always carried two pairs, (although never required the second pair in over 30 years of flying).

Must be middle admin staff gone mad
Acrosport II is offline  

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