What Not to Wear, Or Use, While Driving to Prevent Accidents | Staver
legal blog

What Not to Wear, Or Use, While Driving to Prevent Accidents

Written by Jared Staver

Read Jared's Bio

Jared Staver is a Personal Injury Lawyer based in Chicago, Illinois and has been practicing law for over 20 years.

Jared Staver

CATEGORY: Auto Accidents

Driving responsibly is a serious task. When you get behind the wheel of a car, you’re making a commitment to yourself and your fellow drivers to pay attention to the road and ensure the safety of everyone on or near the road.

Getting distracted by handheld devices or even by the clothes or shoes you’re wearing could lead to severe accidents, and you may be held responsible for any damages, injuries, or even deaths you may cause by driving negligently.

Are There Laws for What to Wear While You Drive in Chicago?

There are no specific laws about what clothes or shoes you can wear in a car. However, driving without clothes in some states can lead to indecent exposure charges. Just because there aren’t laws ruling out what you can or cannot wear while you drive, fashion choices can still disrupt driving.

Footwear to Avoid

Although it’s a common misconception, driving with bare feet is not illegal. It isn’t recommended, however, because your feet could slip off the pedals, resulting in an accident. If you’re in a crash while barefoot, you could be found negligent and charged with reckless driving.

Slide-on shoes, like sandals, slippers, or flip-flops, are another footwear fashion to avoid. It’s common for the shoes to slide off when switching between pedals, which could result in a crash.

Wedges, high heels, or thick-soled shoes are also to be avoided, as they can put more distance between your foot and the pedals, diminishing your control on the pressure you can use.

Drivers should use caution if they’re wearing heavy boots, like work or cowboy boots, as they can cause you to use too much pressure on driving. They could also hit more than one pedal at a time.

Alternative Footwear

Just because you shouldn’t drive with fashionable footwear doesn’t mean you can’t wear it, just wait until after the drive. One solution is to have a pair of driving shoes in your vehicle to change into before you get behind the wheel.

These don’t have to be fancy shoes, just a pair that is secure, comfortable, and won’t hit more than one pedal at a time.

Clothing to Wear

In most states, it’s not illegal to drive without any clothes on, but you’ll risk an indecent exposure charge if someone reports you. But that doesn’t mean you should wear more clothes than you need to.

Drivers shouldn’t be wearing tight-fitting clothes that might restrict their movement or keep them from being able to turn their heads to look around the vehicle. Loose-fitting or extra clothing, like oversized coats or jackets, should be removed before sitting down behind the wheel, as those clothes could impede driving.

Finding a balance between being comfortable and being safe is essential when driving.

What to Wear on a Motorcycle

A common phrase for motorcyclists is “Dress for the slide, not the ride,” meaning a cyclist should always wear appropriate clothing to protect them if a crash happens.

It’s common for bikers to receive road rash or head injuries if they’re improperly dressed. Helmets are not required by law in Illinois, but they are highly recommended, especially if you’re looking for financial compensation after a crash.

It might be tempting to look cool, but it’s better to look safe for the road ahead.

Are Headphones Legal?

Under Illinois law, it is illegal for any driver to wear a headset receiver, which is defined as any device other than a hearing aid worn on a person’s head and enables them to receive electronic communications.

There are exceptions, like hearing aids or a single-ear Bluetooth earpiece, intercom-equipped motorcycle helmets, and headsets worn by emergency responders or construction workers.

Can I Use My Phone While Driving?

In most instances, no, you cannot use your phone. Under the distracted driving laws enacted in 2019, various restrictions exist on using a cellular device in a car. Drivers cannot read or send text messages, browse the internet, or take photos or videos within 500 feet of a crash scene.

Drivers younger than 18 are not permitted to use a phone at all, and drivers over 18 are allowed to use the GPS function on a phone if it is mounted and hands-free.

Get Help After a Chicago Car Crash

If you’ve been injured due to the negligence of another driver, contact Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. today at (312) 236-2900 for a free consultation. An experienced no win no fee lawyer can help establish a defense and will work with you to get the best outcome after a crash.

Free Consultation
(312) 236-2900
(312) 236-2900
Skip to content