Is it legal to drive barefoot in Florida?

Trooper Steve answers viewer questions

ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers viewer questions and shares tips about the rules of the road, helping Central Florida residents become better drivers by being better educated.

The most recent question came from a mother, who asked, “My daughter asked me if she could take her shoes off while driving because her foot hurt. I told her it was against the law. I hope I was right. Was I?”

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“If there is one thing I do know, it’s the ‘Law of Mom.’ If mom is telling you that you need to wear shoes while driving and you’re driving moms’ car, then yes, that is a law,” Trooper Steve said.

But Florida law does not say that driving without shoes is illegal.

“Actually, it doesn’t address it at all,” Trooper Steve said. “But let’s think about exactly what we’re doing here. Any type of crash could be rather devastating if you don’t have anything protecting your feet.”

Trooper Steve then recounted a crash on I-4 in Osceola County.

“I received a phone call from my cousin. Unfortunately, she was involved in a serious car crash along I-4 close to the attractions,” he said. “I responded and once I got on scene, I realized how bad her injuries were. She was not wearing any shoes while driving and when the collision happened, her right foot slammed into the accelerator. This caused some serious injuries as her foot was split between the big toe and the next toe.”

[VIDEO BELOW: Trooper Steve takes on driver whose foot was hanging out window]

Trooper Steve said the incident was traumatic for his cousin and himself.

“We all drive without shoes sometimes so I understand, and I’m not sitting here saying that you’re a bad person if you drive without shoes or with flip-flops, but what I am saying is there are consequences to some of the things that we do, even if it’s a routine daily activity,” he said. “If you’re driving a long distance or at high speeds, I recommend wearing sneakers so that your feet are protected.”

Wearing sandals and similar type of shoes is common in Florida, but Trooper Steve said, “It is my job is to preach safety and at the end of the day, we could really do some damage to ourselves simply because we’re trying to be comfortable.”

About the Authors:

Daniel started with WKMG-TV in 2000 and became the digital content manager in 2009. When he's not working on, Daniel likes to head to the beach or find a sporting event nearby.

Steven Montiero, better known as “Trooper Steve," joined the News 6 morning team as its Traffic Safety Expert in October 2017. A Central Florida native and decorated combat veteran, Montiero comes to the station following an eight-year assignment with the Florida Highway Patrol.