We’ve all been there: you’re wearing high heels or men’s dress shoes with a slick sole, and you get in the car to drive. However, while those shoes may go well with your clothing, they aren’t the finest choice for driving.
When you’re behind the wheel, wearing the wrong shoes might induce “pedal error,” which is when your foot slips off the brake or accelerator pedal, or you push the wrong pedal, both of which can result in a crash. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, driver pedal mistakes cause 16,000 crashes each year.
Adding automotive accessories may be both entertaining and practical. And there are a plethora of ways to dress up your car.
However, what you wear while driving can have an impact on car safety. If you want to be on the safe side when driving, here are shoes to avoid.
While driving, the best shoes to wear are:
The finest shoes for placing even pressure on the brake and accelerator pedals and pivoting your heel from one pedal to another are comfortable tennis or running shoes with a flat sole that fit securely to your foot.
Shoes for Driving
The driving shoe is a slip-on moccasin-style with rubber soles and grommets that wrap around the back of the heel, originally created for sports car enthusiasts. These shoes provide a pivot point for moving your foot from the brake to the accelerator, allowing for increased grip and pedal traction.
Shoes You Shouldn’t Wear While Driving
Mules and flip-flops
Any shoe that isn’t secured to the heel in any way can cause braking and acceleration issues. These shoes can also fall off and get caught beneath a pedal, impairing your ability to drive safely.
Shoes for the Home
These shoes, whether slip-ons or enclosed slippers, were made for comfort, not for driving. They lack the grip needed to effectively engage the pedals due to their loose fit and pliable soles.
Because there is an impediment between the bottom of your foot and the top of the pedals, these types of shoes might give the driver a misleading feeling of pressure applied to the brake and accelerator. Furthermore, they, like other shoes, can become sideways and become jammed under one of the pedals.
These can make it difficult to swing your foot from the accelerator to the brake pedal on your heel, which is essential for safe driving. High heels may also force you to hover your foot between the accelerator and the brake, which not only increases tiredness but also eliminates the vital contact and pivot point required for effective and safe reaction time.
Shoes that are brand new
New shoes with leather or wood soles can be not only uncomfortable until they’re broken in, but they can also be slick and slippery, making the foot-to-pedal interaction shaky.
Boots for work
Large boots may hamper your vision when driving. Furthermore, driving with larger boots can be more difficult due to the difficulty in precisely feeling where the pedals are.
Boots for cowboys
They have a good sole, but the elevated heel could cause pedal interference while driving.
No shoes at all
When you’re barefoot, you have no way of uniformly distributing your foot’s force, and you may not have enough pressure to adequately engage the brakes, especially when the anti-lock braking system (ABS) is engaged. Furthermore, sweaty and slick feet might compromise pivot and pedal grip, as well as reaction time.
Top Footwear Suggestions
“Wear sensible attire for driving, especially on a lengthy journey; suitable shoes are very crucial; we also would not recommend driving barefoot because you don’t have the same braking power with barefoot as you do with shoes,” the Driving Standards Agency advises.
Driving footwear should have the following characteristics:
- The shoe’s sole should be no more than 10mm thick.
- The sole should not be excessively thin or overly soft at the same time.
- There should be enough traction on the pedals to keep the sole from slipping off.
- It’s important that the shoe isn’t overly heavy.
- It should not restrict ankle motion.
- It should not be so large that stepping on two pedals is unavoidable.
- Walking or gym shoes should suffice.
Wearing the proper footwear is essential, and flip-flops and sandals are typically regarded as the most dangerous of any unsuitable footwear. When driving, shoes that don’t fit properly may slip off and get in the way of the foot controls.
Trendy footwear to make a good flip flops image for specific events is fine, but when seated in your seating posture, the shape and style of the pedals might impede firm operation, resulting in loss of control and possible accidents.
A flat shoe that does not slip off the foot and allows the driver to feel the pedals via the sole is ideal for driving. This improves your ability to apply enough pressure to the pedals without causing any discomfort, which is ideal for driving.
High heels present further issues, such as the heel catching on the floor mat and becoming caught, and ankle movement is severely limited for clutch control in slow moving settings. Thick-soled shoes, such as work boots, reduce the feel and contact with the pedal, increasing the danger of slipping.