- In accidents
No law in California requires you to wear shoes while driving a motor vehicle in the state. That said, is it a good idea to wear shoes while driving? That is a question of individual preference and experience, but here are some considerations.
Are you used to driving without shoes? If you are not used to driving without shoes, the pedals will feel different under your feet. You may have reduced traction on the pedals if your feet are sandy or dirty. You may feel you need to use more force to press down the pedals without shoes. This may throw off your driving habits, confuse your muscle memory, delay your reaction time, or cause you to press the wrong pedal in an emergency.
Are you used to walking around without shoes? If you are not used to being barefoot, the pedals may cause blisters or sore spots on your feet, making driving difficult or even painful. In addition, if you are forced to stop and get out of your car, you may have to walk barefoot on super-heated rocky pavement. Even worse, If you are in an accident, your feet may be more severely injured because they have no protection from crushing metal and sharp corners. Additionally, you may not have access to your shoes after an accident and be forced to walk barefoot on broken glass and sharp debris. Finally, if your car breaks down, your feet may get cold in the winter months as you wait for help to arrive.
Can I Wear Flip-Flops While Driving In California?
What about flip-flops? Is driving with flip-flops better than driving barefoot in California? This question again comes down to the individual. Although the feel of the pedal may be more familiar while wearing flip-flops, and they may provide some minimal protection to the bottoms of your feet, they may be slippery and cause your feet to slide off the pedals. Flip-flops could also become stuck under the pedals, which could cause an accident. Similarly, they could slip off your feet, causing a distraction to you as a driver.
What Other Types Of Footwear Are Dangerous To Wear While Driving In California?
Some people believe that driving in certain shoes, such as extremely high heels, wedges, or platforms, can be dangerous. The TV show Mythbusters determined that these shoes did not significantly hamper the ability of the hosts to drive on a closed course. However, what is true for two individuals may not be true for everyone. In reality, awkward footwear may cause just enough of a distraction or a change in muscle memory to cause a delay in hitting the correct pedal, which could result in an accident.
As with barefoot driving, if a police officer believes your footwear contributed significantly to an accident, they could cite you for reckless driving.
What Should I Do To Avoid Dangerous Barefoot Driving?
One option to avoid ever getting in trouble for driving barefoot or with the wrong footwear is to keep a pair of comfortable sneakers or other driving shoes in your car. That way, you always have appropriate footwear on hand whenever you drive. Good driving shoes are closed-toed (to protect your feet), do not have a significant heel, and have good traction on the pedals.
Suffered an injury? The personal injury attorneys at Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates are here for you and can help you get justice and compensation. To schedule your initial case consultation, call 888-848-5084 or visit our website today.
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