Is this legal?

driving

#1

I broke two bones in my right foot in an unfortunate closet/filing-cabinet accident. I’ve looked in the Minnesota driver’s training manual, but can find nothing that says it’s illegal to drive using my left foot. Does anyone know if I’m breaking the law – by driving using my left foot, not by having a closet accident.


#2

ii dont think its illegal, BUT…

are you confident you can (in an emergency) coordinate the gas, brake and/or clutch???

if the time arises, and in a panic are you certain your (or possibly MY) life is safe doing that?


#3

people who are handicapped drive all the time, and people who have life changing accidents learn to drive too.


#4

Before you go out on the roads doing that, I’d get someone to drive you to a big, empty parking lot so that you can try it without fear of hitting someone. I’d be concerned about how the heck you’re going to sit, what with the gas pedal being all the way over on the right. I personally think it’s a bad idea and not worth the risk, but try it and see.

I don’t know of laws anywhere that say you can’t drive with an injured foot/ankle/leg. It probably hasn’t come up much, if at all.


#5

I’m in NY & our rural postal people drive left footed all the time!
It is a bit strange, seeing a person sitting in the passenger seat, steering the car with their left hand, while they put mail into boxes with their right hand!


#6

[b]By law, the doctor that treated you for your injury must report this to the Minnesota DMV. The DMV then makes a determination as to whether or not you’re able to operate a motor vehicle safely. If not, they pull your drivers license temporarily until the doctor reports back that you’ve healed to the point where you can operate a motor vehicle again. The DMV then reinstates your drivers license.

This same thing happened with a co-worker. Only in his case, it was arthritis that left him partially diabilitated to where he couldn’t move too quickly. His doctor reported this to the Minnesota DMV and they pulled his drivers license temporarily. He took cabs back and forth to work for about a month until the treatments he was receiving allowed him to get full physical motor actions back. At that point the doctor reported this to the DMV, and they reinstated his drivers license. He’s still driving today.

Tester[/b]


#7

If you are confident you can drive safely using your left foot, then just go ahead and do so, law or no law.

One of the huge problems of trying to always be a law-abiding citizen is that nobody really knows the law, and it can be very, very difficult to find out. Even judges don’t know every law. They have to rely on the lawyers to tell them. Lawyers, in turn, send clerks to spend hours looking things up.

So do the sensible thing and just go ahead and drive. If you insist on knowing the actual truth, your right foot might heal up long before you get a definitive answer from the states’s Attorney General office.


#8

I’ve driven with one leg for 12 years. My left leg is dead to movement except walking due to a hip replacement for heavy damage. I also still ride a dirt bike and an ATV Kawasaki that I put a hand shift on. LEE


#9

We also broke a bone in our right foot and drive a standard transmission. We did this at work and the work comp dr didnt tell us not to drive. We got into an accident going to our county to get a temp disabled tag for our car as we werent able to brake fast enough. This was during non rush hour traffic too. Had to go to drivers classes because of it too.

You shouldnt try it as you just dont have the cooridation to do it. Either get a automatic; have someone else drive you to places; take a cab; bus, maybe you can have a metro wide disabled van (for handicapped pickup as opposed to the bus for people who need to get to doctor etc) pick you up. You should try braking with a foot in a cast or try getting your left foot over to the side to brake with your foot in a castin the way. Doesnt work too well.

As for the rural mail carriers; well we too have them in CO, WY, ID, MT etc. None of them are driving standards since they too wouldnt be able to drive and deliver mail on a rural mail box route. Yes they drive one handed but they also have lights / signs on their cars and usually use flashers as well.


#10

I would not use postal carriers as precedent. It is against federal law to interfere with delivery of the mail and postal carriers on their routes are effectively exempt from state motor vehicle laws.

I don’t think I have ever heard of a state law forbidding driving with the left foot, but you’d have to check with your local DMV to be sure. Sometimes it is better to ask forgiveness than permission.


#11

If you have an automatic transmission, J.c.whitney used to carry a left foot gas pedal. You might try their web site to see if they still have them.

If you practice for a little before entering traffic, you may be able to pull it off. But there will be a learning curve.


#12

I ride to band rehearsals with a friend who is in her late 70’s and had a stroke which affected her right side. She has to reach through the wheel to with her left hand to start the engine and to put the car in drive. I wondered how she would handle an emergency situation. Well, I found out. We were driving on a busy road about 30 miles an hour through a college campus and 2 students walked out right in front of us. My friend braked that Cadillac to a stop so quickly that we missed the students. I have no physical impairments, and I don’t think I could have stopped the car that quickly. (I probably wouldn’t have tried–they looked like D- students to me).