Andalucía tops the list of regions that most use swimwear when driving with 55.8%. CEA
Can I drive wearing my swimwear or flip-flops in summer?
Road safety

Can I drive wearing my swimwear or flip-flops in summer?

Almost 96% of drivers in Span believe they wear appropriate clothing when driving, however, one in four confesses to driving in their swimwear

Motor Channel / Patxi Fernández


Tuesday, 9 July 2024, 20:05

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The summer months are key for road travel and with high temperatures it is advisable to take extra precautions at the wheel as roads can be dangerous when driving. The hot weather can alter a driver's ability to drive, cause fatigue, produce aggression, tension or nervousness and cause damage to the vehicle.

In addition to driving after a good night's rest and proper maintenance of the car, clothing can be crucial to avoid problems and accidents at the wheel.

In the southern regions of Spain it is more common to drive barefoot or in flip-flops, and on the coast in swimwear. In general, drivers are more aware of the correct footwear than clothing when driving in the summer season.

The General Road Traffic Regulations (RGC) do not include any prohibition or restriction on the clothing that drivers must wear in the vehicle. However, drivers must take care, and may be fined for failing to comply with article 13, which refers to the general rules of driving: "the driver of a vehicle is obliged to maintain his own freedom of movement, the necessary field of vision and permanent attention to driving".

The DGT does not envisage a ban on any type of clothing

The law does not expressly prohibit driving in swimwear, flip-flops, high heels, without a shirt, among others, but it does point out that anything an officer considers could hinder or compromise a driver's ability to drive normally, such as flip-flops or barefoot or anything that limits the freedom of movement to operate the pedals, can therefore be considered as an action that compromises the safety of the driver and their passengers.

Similarly, wearing swimwear could be considered punishable because these clothes do not allow you to adopt the correct position at the wheel due to the discomfort caused by the seat belt or contact with the seats. Driving without a shirt or in a bikini can also be dangerous as the seat belt, which is compulsory, can cause burns, chafing and skin damage.

The general road traffic regulations state: "drivers must at all times be in a position to control their vehicles or animals". Special care must be taken to maintain the appropriate position and that the rest of the passengers maintain it, and the appropriate positioning of the objects or animals being transported so there is no interference between the driver and any of them".

Breaching these rules will result in a fine of 80 euros, but these will depend on the traffic police officers who have the final word.

We believe we dress appropriately

A total of 96% of motorists believe they are wearing the right clothing when they drive, but one in four confess they do so in swimwear, according to the findings of a survey conducted by the CEA Foundation, which also concluded that the clothing motorists believe to be appropriate does not coincide with what is advisable.

According to the data collected in the survey among 1,025 people, 26.73% drive in bathing clothes in summer. This type of clothing is not recommended as in the event of an accident the damage caused will be greater. However, despite the fact that one in four respondents say they drive in swimwear, 96% believe they do so with the appropriate clothing. This indicates a lack of knowledge between what is recommended and what is considered appropriate when driving.

The European Automobile Commission Foundation has detected through the results of its survey that, depending on the area of the country, drivers have different habits when it comes to selecting appropriate clothing and footwear. In the north of Spain, 28% of those surveyed confess that they occasionally drive in swimwear, while 56% of drivers do so in the south. In the Mediterranean and Levante region, 30% of those questioned have driven in such clothing in summer. Even 26% of motorists in the central region of the country also use swimwear for driving in the summer period.

These data show how the influence of culture and weather conditions determine people's clothing and driving habits. The same is true for footwear, with 7% of respondents in the north saying they have driven in flip-flops or barefoot, while in the south this figure rises to 13%.

The European Automobile Commission Foundation has asked about the footwear used by motorists when driving. In this case, 86.83% consider they always wear the correct footwear. Only 5.17% of those questioned said they usually drive in flip-flops. Similarly, 5.27% of motorists responded they drive barefoot. These results show when motorists are faced with the question of which footwear is advisable, the vast majority know that driving barefoot or wearing flip-flops is dangerous. Driving a vehicle barefoot leads to a loss of footprint and pedal feel; similarly, driving barefoot in flip-flops deprives you of maximum freedom of movement and can lead to an accident because you are unable to act correctly in the event of an unforeseen event.

Clothing by region

By region, some curious data can be extracted, which demonstrate the different habits and customs depending on the area and the climate. Some of the most significant data are as follows:

Andalucía tops the list of the regions for most use of bathing clothes while driving, with 55.8%. A total of 11.63% drive in flip-flops and 7% barefoot. This data contrasts with the answers to the question of whether they think they wear the right clothing, where all those consulted answered yes, while 21% consider they do not wear the right footwear.

In Castile-La Mancha, 30% say they drive in swimwear and 10% in flip-flops. Some 20% say they do not wear the right footwear, while 90% believe they wear the right clothing for this activity.

In the Valencian Community, 28.89% drive in swimwear, 11.11% drive in flip-flops and 6.67% drive barefoot. Some 15% believe they do not wear the most appropriate footwear for driving and the vast majority think they are wearing the correct clothing.

In Castilla y León, 25.93% use swimwear when driving, 3.7% confess to driving in flip-flops, although 77.78% believe they wear the correct footwear and all say they wear the right clothes.

In Madrid, one out of every four people surveyed drive in swimwear (25.4%), but only 4.42% do so in flip-flops and 4.91% barefoot. 11.53% of Madrid residents believe they do not wear the most appropriate footwear, while 95.46% believe they wear the appropriate clothing.

In Galicia, 23.08% drive in swimwear; 7.69% drive in flip-flops and the same percentage barefoot. They coincide in the belief that they wear the most appropriate clothing, although 23% believe they do not wear the correct footwear.

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