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Flip-flops: An unexpected danger on the road

On Behalf of | May 11, 2017 | Car Accidents

If you watch the news, you can tell flip-flop season has already started by the number of car accidents stories in the news that mention them.

Flip-flops are a fail when it comes to footwear for driving.

For example, a Florida woman recently parked her Ford Freestyle in her neighbor’s living room when her flip-flop covered foot slipped off the break. The flip-flop then managed to get wedged underneath the gas pedal, propelling her car across the street and through the brick wall of her neighbor’s house.

Flip-flops were also the focus of a study in the United Kingdom, where researchers found that more than a third of drivers blamed the flimsy footwear for mishaps, near-misses and accidents while on the road.

Other studies show that flip-flops actually double how long it takes to transfer your foot from the gas pedal to the break when compared to wedge-heeled shoes. They also cause a delay in deceleration — one that’s significant enough to carry a car an extra 11 feet before stopping if the car is going 60 miles per hour.

There are actually a multitude of problems that drivers can encounter with flip-flops. First, they aren’t terribly secure on the foot, which can lead to a shoe falling off at an inconvenient moment. Because they’re thin, they can easily slip under the break pedal and you can end up in a situation like the Florida woman.

Another problem is that the soles are so thin they can actually roll up or bend under your foot — which means you foot could easily slip off the pedal.

Finally, flip-flops aren’t exactly known for their traction. Some have soles that are almost entirely smooth and that can cause you foot to slip right off the pedal instead of staying where you put it.

The good news is that there’s an easy solution to flip-flop woes: You can do what working women who wear heels have done for years and tuck a spare pair of sneakers in your car. Use those to drive with and switch back to your flip-flops when you get to your destination.

If you’ve been in a car accident due to someone’s negligent choice of footwear, consider talking to an attorney about the possibility of a claim.

Source:, “Car crashes through front of home in FWB,” May 05, 2017


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