Driving in flip-flops always seems like a good idea when you’re in a rush or you’re on your way to get some groceries. But, is that really the safest option? Yes, it’s comfortable and quick, but there are some things you need to think about first.
People don’t often think about what they’re wearing on their feet if they don’t plan to leave their car for a long period of time. However, footwear plays a huge role in the overall driving experience and your safety on the road.
We get it, there’s nothing better than spending a hot summer day on the beach or on a picnic. When you do, your first choice of footwear is probably flip-flops or sandals. However, you might want to consider bringing a pair of closed-toe shoes to keep in your car for your way back home.
If you’re wondering if driving in flip-flops is even legal and how dangerous it can be, we’re here to answer all of your questions. Before you head out for the day, let’s go over some things you should know first, so you can stay safe and enjoy your wonderful summer days.
Driving in flip-flops: Is it allowed?
When you’re behind a wheel, there are a lot of things to keep in mind, and your choice of footwear should definitely be one of them. Although driving in flip-flops might seem like the easiest choice when you’re in a rush, could it get you in trouble with the law?
In short – no, driving in flip-flops isn’t illegal, but that doesn’t make it the safest option. In fact, there’s a Highway Code that addresses this matter in particular.
According to the Rule 97 of the Highway Code, the clothing and the footwear you wear when driving mustn’t prevent you from using the car controls in the proper manner.
Driving with footwear that lacks grip and doesn’t keep your feet in place, such as flip-flops, can lead to you not being able to use your pedals the right way. Your feet could easily slip and slide out of your footwear, which could result in you losing control of the vehicle.
This could easily be seen as a violation of Rule 97. Because of that, in case of an accident, you could get in trouble with the police if they notice you’ve been driving in inadequate footwear.
Where is driving in flip-flops illegal?
There are some countries where driving in flip-flops is forbidden by law and you could easily risk a fine. For example, in France and Spain, this type of footwear is prohibited when driving, and you’d be in big trouble if you end up in an accident when wearing it.
You’ll probably end up being held liable for the damage. Because of that, it’s best to avoid any possible issues and don’t drive in flip-flops at all, especially in these holiday countries. That way, you’ll avoid putting others and yourself at risk, and paying a fine on top of it.
Why is driving in flip-flops dangerous?
When driving in flip-flops, you don’t have the same braking force as you do when wearing shoes that are suitable for driving. Without enough breaking force, you’re more likely to cause a crash that could seriously harm you and other drivers on the road.
Driving in inadequate footwear can limit your ability to drive. For example, when you try pressing the break, your strap could easily get caught on the accelerator, which as a result could prevent you from stopping.
On top of that, driving in flip-flops can take your attention off the road. It could be pretty distracting if your flip-flops get stuck underneath the pedal. The only way you could retrieve them is by taking your eyes and attention from the road, which is never a good idea.
More than a thousand people get injured daily in car accidents caused by distracted drivers. Sometimes, a small thing that seems insignificant at first, such as wearing flip-flops, can turn your life around. We believe it’s always better to stay safe than sorry.
What sort of footwear is the best to drive in?
Wearing proper footwear is of vital importance when you’re behind the wheel. The general rule is that you shouldn’t wear shoes that have soles that are thicker than 10mm. You should also avoid soles that are too soft or thin or shoes that are too heavy with little to no ankle movement.
Here are some things you should keep in mind when you’re choosing the proper footwear when driving:
- Your shoes should be non-slippery so you’re sure they won’t slip off the pedal.
- Avoid wearing shoes that are too wide, as you could accidentally press two pedals at once.
- You should avoid wearing high heels and flip-flops.
- Avoid heavy shoes with thick soles.