Thongs are quintessential in Aussie’s shoe rack — especially during the inferno summer months. But are they considered appropriate to wear while driving a car? Let’s take a look at what our road rules say.
There are no specific laws in Australia that prohibit drivers from using certain types of footwear. With that said, you are expected to wear shoes that are comfortable and do not inhibit your ability to drive.
Under South Australia’s Australian Road Rules 2008, rule 297, drivers must take all precautions to drive in the safest manner possible. This includes wearing shoes that are suitable for operating pedals. It could be argued that certain types of footwear – including loose-fitting thongs and high heels – do not meet this criteria.
In the event of an accident, failure to have proper shoes on could land you on the wrong side of the law. As the Australian website driverknowledgetests.com explains:
Thongs don’t provide the best traction on the pedals and they can get caught underneath the pedals. If you have an accident and your thongs are to blame then you risk being prosecuted for not being in control of your vehicle.
In other words, wearing thongs while driving won’t result in a ticket in and of itself – but if you’re involved in a crash or are pulled over for erratic driving, your choice in footwear could be factored into the penalty you receive.
Seeing as it’s legal to drive barefoot in Australia, you’re usually better off chucking your thongs in the glovebox and donning them at your destination instead. Failing that, make sure your thongs have good traction and are tight-fitting.
This article has been updated since its original publication.
When you're wearing impractical shoes to go out or when you want to duck out to the local shops quickly, it's tempting to drive without shoes on. Wearing thong or high heels while driving can be dangerous so the next best option is to just take them off and drive sans shoes. But is it legal to do this? Let's find out.Read more