Is It Really Illegal To Drive Barefoot in New Mexico?

The sun in New Mexico is very hot and shines down strongly on Albuquerque. The road looks hot and makes your sandals feel like they are melting. Removing your shoes and sailing without any worries might seem like the perfect way to get away from it all. Before you start driving with the wind on your feet, you might wonder: Is it allowed to drive without shoes in New Mexico?

The Barefoot Driving Question

This question, which appears to be simple, has caused confusion for many years. Some people think that there is a law in the entire country that prohibits driving without shoes. Is this only a made-up story, or is there some truth to the rumors?

Dispelling the Myth: It’s Not Illegal

Surprisingly, there is no federal law in the United States that says you can’t drive without shoes. As of 2024, none of the 50 states have laws that specifically make the practice illegal. This may surprise you, even though many people believe this misconception.

So, if it’s not against the law in the entire country, what are the specific regulations in New Mexico? Let’s explore the driving rules in the state.

No Barefoot Laws on the Books

New Mexico is similar to the rest of the country. Currently, there are no laws in the state that say you can’t drive without shoes. This means that you will not be stopped and given a ticket just because you are driving without shoes.

Are There Any Exceptions?

Although there are no specific laws about driving barefoot, it’s important to remember that New Mexico, like all states, has laws against reckless driving. If you drive without shoes and it affects your ability to operate the vehicle safely, leading to an accident, you may be charged with reckless driving.

Here’s an important point: driving without shoes can be dangerous, even though it’s not against the law. Let’s look into the reasons why.

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Reduced Feel and Control

One of the main problems with driving without shoes is that it can make it harder to feel and control the car. Your bare feet don’t sense the pressure changes on the pedals as well as your shoes because the nerves in your feet are delicate. Having this can make it more difficult to control your braking and acceleration smoothly. This could result in sudden movements and make it harder for you to react quickly in an emergency.

Risks of Flip-Flops and Sandals

Some people believe that being barefoot feels better than wearing bulky shoes, but this is not always the case for all types of shoes. Flip-flops and sandals can be dangerous. They can easily come off your feet, get stuck under the pedals, or make it difficult to switch between pedals. This can be very risky, as it can make it harder for you to stop the vehicle quickly or steer it properly.

Can Barefoot Driving Affect Your Coverage?

Driving barefoot does not automatically result in denial of coverage for car insurance. However, it is important to be aware of the possible consequences it may have on your insurance.

Fault and Contributing Factors

Insurance companies aim to reduce the amount of money they pay out. If you get into a car accident while driving without shoes, and the insurance company can argue that not wearing shoes played a part in the accident, they might try to lower the amount of money they give you or refuse to give you any money at all.

Here’s the important thing to remember: the insurance company has the responsibility to provide evidence. In order to prove that barefoot driving caused the accident, they must show a clear connection. It can be challenging, but it is achievable.

For instance, if you were determined to be responsible for the accident because you braked late or made a clumsy move, and the insurance company has proof that indicates your driving without shoes might have contributed, they could use that information to explain why they are paying you less money.

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