You need to run up to the bus stop to pick up the kids, and you cannot find your other shoe. You jump in the car without any shoes on – it’s just a short drive down the street. Did you just break the law? Driving barefoot is not always the smartest thing to do especially when you need to be able to react quickly. However, not many states have laws on the books barring it. Learn more about whether barefoot driving laws impact you and why it may not be a wise idea for you to drive like this even if you really do prefer to do so.
Can You Drive Barefoot?
Some people like to drive barefoot all of the time. They bring shoes along to put on once they reach their desired area. There can be some benefits to driving like this for those individuals such as remaining comfortable and relaxed. Other people like to be able to move their toes and flex their feet more, which is easier to do when you are not driving with shoes on. More so, after a long day at work, the last thing you want to do is drive in heels on the way home.
Is it legal to do so, though? Some states have driving laws in place that limit what you can wear on your feet. The goal is very simply to help minimize risk. Driving footwear can play a role in whether or not you are able to respond fast enough to stop the car, for example. To find out what barefoot driving laws are in your area, contact your local police department to inquire. Your state’s department of motor vehicles may also have some information to provide you. You may be able to learn about this information by using online resources for the department.
What Driving Shoes Do You Need to Drive Legally?
Why do you need driving shoes? Some states do not allow you to drive without shoes. They want to ensure you are able to drive in a safe manner. In some communities, it may be illegal to drive with certain types of shoes as well. For example, flip flops while driving is never very safe. These shoes do not hold onto your feet, which means the sole can easily get stuck under the gas pedal, making it impossible for you to safely stop the car. Driving in any type of shoe like this – even driving slippers – can be seen as worrisome if there is any risk that the shoe can get caught on the pedal and cause an accident to occur.
Car Driving Shoes That Cause Increased Risk of Accidents
Consider what your shoes need to do in order to help you to operate a vehicle safely. Car driving shoes should have a flat bottom. This allows for the foot to depress the brake or the gas pedal with even force and rather easily. If, for example, you are driving in high heels, when you press down, the back of the shoe may not depress enough, causing you to step on the gas too fast with the top of your foot.
As noted, driving in shoes that do not latch to the foot in some way, such as slippers or sandals, can put you at risk as well. They can get caught on the pedal and make it hard for you to stop the vehicle.
Driving Barefoot and Insurance Claims
In many areas, driving barefoot is not banned. You can do so if you would like to. However, if there is any reason why your barefoot driving caused an accident, you could be liable for the losses. For example, on a hot day, your feet may not be as dry as they usually are. You get in the vehicle without shoes, drive down the road, and your foot slips off the brake pedal. The car slides into the other driver, causing damage to his car. In this case, you may need to file an auto insurance claim. The result of this could be fines and points on your license, too. Your auto insurance rates can go up with multiple claims.
Breaking Barefoot Driving Laws – What’s the Cost?
If there are barefoot driving laws in your community, learn about them and the premise behind them. Then work to minimize the risk of being behind the wheel without shoes. Remember, you may have to pay a fine for such an infraction. However, if an accident occurs and you cause damage to another person or his or her property, you may end up with driving points added to your license and insurance claims.
Whenever possible, protect your feet and your driving ability by wearing proper driving shoes. You are sure to find it is best to do this in most cases.