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Police Forum Police Head Mod: Skidmark
Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 02-01-2009, 04:00 PM   #1
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Left-Foot Driving

Hi,

I've got a question here on behalf of my dad. Unfortunately, he's had to have surgery on his right foot recently, and the surgeon's told him he has to stay off it (i.e., no driving with that foot) for at least six weeks. This presents a problem in getting to and from work.

He drives an automatic. With some practice, would it be legal (and alright by his insurance) to drive with his left foot working the gas and brake? I've had some people tell me it's perfectly fine as long as he gets some practice first, and I've heard others say it's dangerous and will void his insurance.

Thanks for the input.
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Old 02-01-2009, 05:03 PM   #2
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Hmm... I'd be surprised if there actually was something that stated you have to use your right foot to operate the gas pedal. Using the left foot for brake is pretty common, so I can't possibly see there being anything against that... but the gas is an interesting one.

As long as he can control the car properly, I don't see why it would be a problem...
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Old 02-01-2009, 05:39 PM   #3
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I'd tend to agree with InvisibleSoul, I don't recall ever reading anything in the driver's-ed booklets that states what foot or feet you have to use. I doubt a crash related to it would void the insurance, but it may affect his rates IF ICBC were to determine was at fault.
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Old 02-01-2009, 06:03 PM   #4
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Legal or not, best idea is still to arrange a ride for him.
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Old 02-01-2009, 08:49 PM   #5
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As far as I am aware, the only time that this would be a drawback is when your Dad is being re-examined and is able to use his right foot properly. If he is not able to properly control the vehicle using left foot only because of lack of practice and control, he should be very careful or find alternative transportation.

There must be drivers out there with only their left leg...
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Old 02-01-2009, 09:39 PM   #6
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There must be drivers out there with only their left leg...
I know a guy in the states that would track his manual transmission car with his one leg and a crutch. He's switched to an automatic now as he's getting older and joints are more stiff, but he pulled it off for several years.
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Old 02-01-2009, 10:26 PM   #7
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^I blew my left knee out once loading bales of hay... had to work the clutch by just pushing on my knee to push my leg down on the pedal. Managed that way for about a month before my knee was flexible enough for my leg to work properly.
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Old 02-02-2009, 05:25 AM   #8
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A easy and relatively cheap solution would be a hand throttle. Many off roading enthusiast use it to keep the throttle steady while off roading on the rocks or other rough terrain. I used to run one on my TJ back in the day.

It's not much more than a bike shifter cable connected to the throttle. This way your dad can operate the gas with his right hand and the brake with his left foot.




* Can't seem to post the image, either way check it out

You can probably find them at off-roading shops around town, or online.
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Old 02-03-2009, 02:35 AM   #9
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^^^ yeah hand throttle and break is what paraplegics use to drive cars.
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