Is Driving Barefoot Illegal?

Finding out if it's ok to drive a car without shoes

Despite popular beliefs, it is not illegal to drive with no footwear. There are no states that have regulations against driving while you have no shoes or sandals.

You should always keep in mind that when you have no footwear, the control pads grip is reduced, which is risky because it may lead to fatal accidents.

Road experts and most mechanics advise that you should not drive your vehicle with bare feet because of the safety measures.

Assuming that you have decided to travel without any footwear, then the driving side floorboard should not contain shoes because they may be lodged under the control pedals, which will place you in a risky situation.

Below are some questions asked about footwear used in driving and whether they are illegal or not:

  1. Is it Illegal to Drive Without a Shirt?
  2. Is Driving With Sandals Illegal?
  3. Is Driving in Flip Flops Illegal?
  4. What Are the Risks of Driving in Flip Flops?
  5. What Should You Do After You Are Involved in an Accident With Flip Flop?
  6. Can You Be Fined for Driving in Flip Flops?

Driving with bare feet seems so dangerous, of course, when you don’t take a lot of care, it may be hazardous.

Due to this, some states like Alabama emphasize that all motorists should wear shoes while on their bikes.

This is not a law, but it is recommended because the police want to ensure that you are safe while driving.

For instance, if you happen to be involved in an accident and police find out that you have footwear, you might be charged for reckless driving, but if you are wearing no shoes or flip flops, the police will assume that maybe it was a challenge caused with you having no shoes.

List Of States And Countries That Advice Against Driving Barefoot

As guided above, it depends on whether the state you are in is against some traveling habits.

For instance, a state may have a low that doesn’t allow you drive without a shoe some states may even go to an extent of getting you penalized.

In the list below is a list of towns that you should look into whether they are against driving barefoot or not.


Even though the law enforcers caution you from driving barefoot or wearing loose footwear, there is no law that defers you from driving barefoot.

There is also no law that specifies the type of footwear a driver in Florida should use but despite that, you can be charged for reckless driving if it is found out that the cause was because you had nothing worn on your feet or you were using loose footwear like sandals.


The Michigan police department has confirmed that when you are found driving in bare foot no one will ask you but in case you get involved in an accident, the police will assume that as reckless driving and some may argue that it is reckless because a bare foot driver has control over the pedals.


A lot of people do assume that driving without shoes is illegal, well, all you should know that it is not illegal.

The Ohio states published that for any person operating a motor vehicle without shoes is not illegal but care should be taken as there are various circumstances where the act may lead to accidents.

North Carolina

You are recommended to have shoes when driving your vehicle but there is no offense if you wear no shoes in north Carolina.

You should keep in mind that when driving barefooted, the feet may slip off the pedals and as a result an accident may occur which will cause you to have a reckless driving ticket.


The law enforcers of Indiana made it clear to all motorists that despite driving with no shoes being legal; it is an unsafe and risky habit because it may land you into problems like having penalized for careless driving.


Most of your family members may be against driving with no shoes or headphones because they belief it is illegal.

The highway patrol of Missouri is not against this act but they do not encourage you to practice that for your safety.


The federal government of Virginia states that if you drive without shoes or on heels and may be stockings, you might experience a slip of your feet off the pedals and your vehicle control will be compromised.

You should therefore have the right footwear even though driving with bare feet is not illegal.


People in the United Kingdom are not sure if driving barefooted is illegal because there are many myths surrounding the uncertainty.

The UK government does not prevent anybody from driving without shoes or driving with flips, you are advised to make sure you have enough control on the pedals when practicing this.

Can I Be Fined For Driving iI Flip Flops In UK?

In Manchester, even though driving in flip flops is not illegal to some instances, it may land you in trouble of being fined or also being subjected to a road ban.

Because flip flops are fast to wear when going for short distance walks in your vehicle, there is a highway rule that says a driver should wear footwear that does not make it difficult for you to operate the vehicle controls.

In this case, flip flops can easily slide from the pedals and become wedged under your car pedals, and this may stop you from making a proper brake.

In this case, it will be handled as careless driving, and you will be fined 100 pounds, and if the situation gets serious, you can have up to 5,000 pounds as a fine, or the court will give you a driving ban.

What Are Shoes Not Recommended While Driving In UK?

Most of the time, you do not take into consideration the type of footwear you are using in your vehicle, not until you are involved in an accident or a possible accident result due to inappropriate footwear.

Below is a list of shoes that can be a potential source of reckless driving and cause accidents:

High Heeled Shoes

Driving with high heels in the UK is not recommended because the heel may be stuck between the floor mat in your pedal area, and this may lead to an accident where breaking is required because the reaction required by your foot is impaired, you cannot press the brakes.

The heel foot may also not rest on the car floor, posing a dangerous risk because it will be hard for you to move from the accelerating pedal to the braking pedal in the fastest time possible.

Flip Flops

When you use sandals of the same make as the flip flops, it poses you a significant risk because the control pedals can quickly get stuck between the sole and your foot, which in turn leads to reduced vehicle control and an increased amount of time that is needed to break the vehicle.

They can also cause traffic accidents if your foot flips off the control pedals or is caught under them.


When you drive with no shoes, then be sure that the contact with the pedals is reduced compared to when you have put on the right shoes.

It is not illegal to drive with bare feet in Australia but you should take great care because you are at risk of getting involved in an accident.


There is no law that prohibits drivers in Canada from driving with no footwear.

You are at liberty of using even flip flops or sandals so long as great caution is taken when handling your vehicle with some types of footwear.

What Are The Basic Guidelines For Choosing Footwear To Drive-in?

The guidelines below will categorize different shoe types that are not favorable for driving a van and those recommended.

After you have chosen the right footwear, you should be confident that your chances of getting involved in an accident are minimized.

Below are some of the guidelines:

  • Never should you wear too heavy shoes as they may cause you problems when it comes to controlling the pedals.
  • Your footwear sole should not be too thick. It should have an average thickness of 10mm.
  • The shoes should not limit your ankle movement.
  • The shoes should be narrow enough. This avoids the chances of accidentally pressing two pedals at the same time.
  • The shoe sole should not be too thin or too soft; it should have a medium-sized thickness and the required softness.
  • They should have a good number of thread lines to ensure a good grip on the pedals and avoid slipping the foot off the pedal, which may lead to fatal accidents and damage.

1. Is it Illegal To Drive Without A Shirt?

Different people have different views as related to this act because to you it may be decent while to other people will be indecent.

Assuming that you want to show off your well curved body and abs by driving without a shirt, it may cause some distractions to other people while on the highway which may lead to some accidents.

It may be indecent to travel shirtless but it’s also not illegal. There is no law enforced that states you shouldn’t drive while shirtless.

This only applies when you aren’t completely showing off other body parts like breasts.

If you show off your breasts, you may be charged for obscene exposure. However, driving shirtless may not land you in problems.

2. Is Driving With Sandals Illegal?

Sandals are a type of loose footwear that is easy to wear when you are in a rush—assuming that you received an emergency call to see your mother who has fallen sick and has been admitted to the hospital.

For the love of your mother, you will need to hurry and visit her. You may jump into your crocs, jandals, slides, or sandals and drive to the hospital.

It is not illegal to travel in any of these types except that, if they make you drive carelessly because of their loose nature, then you are not advised to use them while driving.

Some states discourage driving with sandals in Australia; you are only allowed to drive with a shoe if you have maximum control over your vehicle.

3. Is Driving In Flip Flops Illegal?

In the hot seasons of summer, people prefer wearing flip flops because they are light and comfortable.

People worry if it is appropriate driving in them, or they could be convicted.

People believe that it is illegal to drive in flip flops, but that is not the case. No law is passed stating that driving in your summer shoes is prohibited.

Despite the absence of a law prohibiting driving by use of flip flops, in Nevada, you are required to drive safely so that you don’t face any legal issue, and you are required to wear the necessary footwear for you to comply with this need.

They advertise that flops are dangerous when used in driving.

4. What Are The Risks Of Driving In Flip Flops?

Even though you are at liberty of driving with flip flops in some states, it is with no offense that this footwear poses a lot of risks once you use them to operate your vehicle.

Extensive research was done, and it was discovered that most motorists were involved in accidents because they were using flip flops while driving.

Below are some of the potential risks when you are using flip flops in driving:

  • The amount of time you will take to respond to various hazards on the road is doubled when you are using flip flops. This will make you slow down when changing from gas to the brake pedals.
  • When you are driving with flip flops, chances of a mishap taking place are high.
  • Annually, flip flops cause around 1.4 million accidents, which means that when you use flip flops, chances of being involved in accidents are high, leading to death and unexpected expenses.
  • When you drive by use of flip flops, the decelerating time is increased, which is not suitable for you in cases where emergency brakes are needed.

Just because using the flip flops is not illegal, flip flops will lead you to commit several infractions and other dangerous driving conditions.

If your flip flops are grip less and have a weak construction with thick or thin soles and no ankle motion, these are some of the dangerous characteristics of footwear that you should not use while driving.

5. What Should I Do After I Am Involved In An Accident With Flip Flops?

As discussed before, flip flops may lead to a severe and even deadly accident.

It doesn’t matter if you are the one who caused the accident or were in a vehicle that the driver was using flip flops caused the accident, chances of you having injuries are high.

Other possessions may be destroyed, and the luck is that you can be compensated if you follow the outlined procedure found in the insurance claims or if you have a personal injury lawsuit.

Below are some of the things you should do before you go for the claim:

  • Seek for emergency response by calling 911 so that the best emergency services and police officers are availed to the scene.
  • You should seek immediate medical attention and have your medical records with you.
  • Ensure you have the contact information of the other driver, not forgetting their insurance information. You are also advised to have contact information from any witness who was at the scene.
  • You can take pictures of the scene without excluding anything. Ensure you capture all the vehicles involved, your injuries if you have any, the traffic signs, and the area within the scene of the accident.

After all the above steps have been taken into consideration, you can now contact your car accident attorney to help raise the insurance company’s claim.

This should be done after you have received full and professional medical attention, and it is confirmed that you are fit.

6 Driving Habits That May Cause Trouble

Even though you have experience in driving and the best driving skills, you may be involved in bad driving habits.

When you indulge in these habits, then you may break traffic laws without realizing it.

If you break the rules, you may have significant trouble with the traffic police that may lead to fines.

Here are six bad driving habits that are termed illegal:

1. Operating A Mobile Phone

Most drivers use their cell phones to text, make calls, and even stream online videos, which makes them distracted.

Even though some tent people are allowed to use their gadgets, it could be better if you avoid using them and focus on the road, and if it’s an emergency, pull over and be through with the call before you proceed.

2. Leaving Pets Loose In The Vehicle

You have your puppy in your car is fine, but never should you let the pet loose.

You may be fined, or rather the pet will cause you a distraction, which may lead to a fatal accident if it jumps to your control pedals.

Always ensure the pet is restrained or well crated for your safety.

3. Driving Past A Parked Vehicle Because Of An Emergency Without Indicating

You should always be careful when you bypass a parked police car because the law states that you should lower your speed or change your lanes so that you are away from the emergency vehicle.

It is good that you follow the rules, or else you will get yourself in trouble.

4. Handling Food While Driving

Never should you eat while you are behind the wheel. When you eat, the concentration is not entirely on the wheel, and this will make you distracted, and you can be arrested for this misconduct.

The best thing to do is save the food and eat once you are done driving or pull over and take the food before continuing the journey.

5. Driving With No Footwear

No one will arrest you because you are operating your car with bare feet, but it is wise to have some shoes on to reduce the chances of slip-offs, which may cause accidents because of lost control.

6. Driving While Music Is Loud

Loud music in your vehicle is a luxury, but the massive woofer installed in your car can cause a lot of noise, which may bother other motorists and, in turn, lead to an accident as they will focus their concentration on your car.

Never should you wear headphones while driving.


Even though driving your car barefooted is not illegal, in the interest of all the road users, you should always wear the appropriate footwear to save lives and reduce unnecessary accidents and damages.


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Written by Kane Dan

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