With sliders becoming the new go-to footwear in the UK, the question are you allowed to drive while wearing the open-toed footwear. Here we take a look at the rules around driving a car while wearing them with sock or barefoot.
Can you wear sliders and socks while driving, or will the police come calling?
Can I drive in sliders and socks in the UK?
There is no direct legislation that makes it illegal for a driver to wear the shoes while driving a car in the UK - either with or without socks on.
In fact, there is currently no legislation in place that requires Brits to wear appropriate shoes for driving.
However, there is advice from the the DVSA that says 'suitable shoes' are important while driving a vehicle in the UK.
What are sliders?
The popular slipper-like shoes are a form of footwear that can be worn by males and females - but has become particularly in vogue for younger men during 2021.
They are a backless, open-toed shoe that can be worn without socks, but many people are now choosing to wear them with the garment.
They take their name, because of the ease of which wearers can simply slide them on and off without the need to undo laces, buckles - or even use hands.
Do they count as suitable shoes to wear when driving in the UK?
There is no definitive description of what amounts to 'suitable' footwear for driving, but motoring experts at the RAC offer these points:
According to the RAC there are some guidelines for what footwear is suitable.
- Have a sole no thicker than 10mm…
- … but the sole should not be too thin or soft.
- Provide enough grip to stop your foot slipping off the pedals.
- Not be too heavy.
- Not limit ankle movement.
- Be narrow enough to avoid accidentally depressing two pedals at once.
So what could I get charged with for wearing them with socks or barefoot while driving?
Rule 97 of the Highway Code states the drivers must have "footwear and clothing which does not prevent you using the controls in the correct manner".
By their design, the open-toe shoes and exposed socks could get caught or wedged beneath a car's pedals, such as the brake or accelerator. This could result in an incident - leaving the driver open to being charged with the likes of careless driving.
What other problems could the popular shoes cause while driving?
The change in sensitivity or weight caused by wearing the lightweight shoes and socks could cause weaker or harder braking than normal, along with erratic use of the accelerator. All of which could cause an accident and leave the driver open to a charge.
So how much could I be fined for wearing the shoes with socks while driving?
If wearing sliders brought about a charge of careless driving, you could receive an instant fine of £100 and three penalty points added to your driving licence.
However, if the incident is more serious and was dealt with by a court, you could receive a fine of up to £5,000, up to nine penalty points and possibly a driving ban.
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