Driving Shoes Proper Shoes For Driving
Proper shoes for driving play a BIG part in driving safety. Yet there are a lot of people who drive with thick-soled shoes, high heels or sandals or no shoes at all !
Using footwear not suitable for driving may cause accidents on the road. A study team interviewed several people involved in near misses due to improper driving footwear.
Here are some of the responses:-
"Wearing the latest fashion thick-soled shoes, I was pressing down on both the accelerator and brake at the same time and not realising it. I thought, 'I'm stepping down the accelerator but it isn't giving much power."
"While driving with high-heeled shoes, the heel got caught on the mat and delayed application of the brakes and I came close to colliding with the car in front. "
"While driving in sandals, the accelerator pedal became pinched between my foot and the sandal. Unable to move over the brake pedal I almost collided with the car ahead."
"My mother drove with long boots and missed operating the brake and collided into a lorry."
"Driving in bare feet enabled me to get a good feel of the pressure being applied to the brake pedal. But the pressure applied can be unexpectedly weak and there was an occasion when a collision into the car ahead was narrowly averted."
"Driving with my bare feet, the stocking I wore caused a slippage off my foot on the brake pedal and braking action was delayed."
The choice of footwear for driving must allow the foot to feel the pressure needed by the pedals to achieve the desired braking or acceleration. Shoes with soles of over 10 mm or clogs with hard heels are unsuitable for driving due to the extremely hard bottoms of these types of footwear that obstruct the feeling required by the feet to operate the pedals properly.
Both accelerator and brake pedals are worked with the heel on the floor. Wearing high-heeled shoes will be a problem since the heel is elevated and the operation of the pedals is hampered because of this.
In the other end of the spectrum, driving barefoot - although providing the maximum feel of the pedals - might result in injury on the feet.
In cases of traffic accidents with nothing to protect the feet, one might tread on broken glass and sustain major injuries. Slight pain in the foot might hinder stepping hard on the brakes in case of emergency.
So what's the best footwear to use while driving ?
But there is no need to buy another pair, you may already have one that will do just fine. Here are some features you can look for in the shoes you already have to check if they will do:
The sole of the shoe is very important in determining what type of footwear to use. The sole should neither be too thick or too thin. It should not be too soft or too flexible and it should have enough grip on the pedal to avoid slipping.
It should be lightweight to enable easy movement.
It should not hinder ankle movement in working various pedals.
It should not be unnecessarily wide as to cause stepping on two pedals at the same time.
For these considerations, your basic trainer shoes ( not the thick soled type) or plain flat shoes is best suited for driving. Not only do these provide enough feeling on the feet, these are also hard and thick enough to help you give the exact pressure needed for braking and acceleration. Most importantly, these types of shoes are comfortable enough for long driving.
To avoid near misses caused by driving with the wrong shoes, it is recommended that plain shoes or light trainers be used while driving. Ladies who like to wear the high heels or platform shoes could change into these before going out of the vehicle.
You wouldn't go for a jog in high heels or flip-flops, so why use them when you're behind the wheel of a car.
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