Equestrians reminded to think about footwear following ‘driving in wellies’ rumours

  • A leading insurer has reminded riders to think carefully about the footwear they wear for driving.

    The call comes after the rumour that driving in wellies is “illegal” has started re-circulating online.

    While it is not as simple as wellies definitely are — or are not — legal to drive in, Shearwater has offered some clarity on the point.

    The insurer, which specialises in rural motor and horsebox insurance, has had questions on the topic after a tabloid ran a news story stating driving in snow boots or wellies could result in a £5,000 fine and nine points on your licence.

    “None of our motor or horsebox policies state what type of footwear is required when driving,” said John Gillingham, head of motor insurance at Shearwater.

    “However, the Highway Code strictly forbids drivers from wearing anything that can jeopardise the movement of your feet to safely work your vehicle.”

    The spokesman said that while the insurer accepts that drivers may often be wearing footwear suitable for the yard, it encourages people to consider their choice carefully for their own safety and those around them.

    “The RACs guidelines for appropriate footwear advise a sole no thicker than 10mm,” he said.

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    Rule 97 of the Highway Code states that drivers should ensure that “clothing and footwear do not prevent you using the controls in the correct manner”.

    Mr Gillingham added: “The same goes for if your pedals are wet or muddy. Although there is no law that specifically dictates that you cannot drive if your pedals are wet or muddy, you must use a reasonable degree of common sense to guarantee that your pedals’ condition will not affect your driving.”

    The same goes for driving barefoot or while wearing flip-flops… although it goes without saying that H&H would hope nobody would be around horses with their toes on show…

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