Is It Illegal To Drive In Flip Flops In The US?


If you’ve lived in Los Angeles for long, you know there’s one type of footwear you’ll see pretty often around town: flip flops! People don’t just walk around the beach in these shoes. You can find people getting behind the wheel on flip flops as well, which is concerning to safety campaigners.

The question becomes: is it illegal to drive in flip flops in the US? Does the state of California have a law against it? While many driving and safety experts have their opinion on this subject, there’s no law against the use of any specific footwear while on the road. So, you are allowed to wear flip flops as long as you don’t cause a crash or commit an infraction while on the road. This is good news for those headed to the beach or who simply like to be casual.

It all boils down to what makes you comfortable. A comfortable driver is one who can safely drive to their destination. You are even allowed to drive barefoot without any restrictions because there’s no rule that could ever stop you. Some drivers feel comfortable wearing flip flops behind the wheel while others, with less experience as drivers, are more hesitant and vulnerable to make costly mistakes.

However, it is important to note here that just because you are allowed to wear any type of footwear doesn’t mean you are acting safely if you do so. If you are not accustomed to wearing flip flops when driving, you will need to pay attention to some safety concerns and constantly be aware. First, driving in flip flops can be dangerous because it limits your ability to drive. As a quick example, imagine you have to press on the brake but the strap of your sandal got caught in the accelerator. You wouldn’t be able to brake on time and would keep driving faster, thereby increasing the chances of getting involved in a car accident. How scary! Also, it can be distracting. Wearing flip flops can be a distraction if your sandal can get stuck under the pedal. This would divert your attention from the road while trying to fix the problem. Taking your eye off the road for only a few seconds increases your chances of being in a car accident, which can lead to a ticket, injuries, medical bills, higher car insurance rates, and more. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that more than 1,000 people are injured each day because of distracted driving.

Essentially, driving in flip flops is not illegal, but they really do not enhance your safety while on the road. So, can you safely drive in them? That’s a question that you need to ask yourself because only you can answer it. If you ever hear someone telling you that driving in flip flops or barefoot is illegal, then take it as a misconception until the state of California officially passes a law against it. If you have any other questions about this, like wondering how a traffic accident because of wearing flip flops will affect your car insurance, reach out to Pronto Insurance and ask!

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