Some days, the weather is so nice or hot that it makes you want to drive around shirtless. You’ll like how the sun or wind feels on your skin.
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But is it okay to do? Here’s what to do.
No federal law says that people of either gender can’t drive without a top. But some states don’t let people be half or fully naked in public. Driving without a shirt on is considered indecent or obscene exposure, and you will be breaking the law.
Before you hit the road without a top, you should find out what the laws are in your state.
Some states and cities have laws that say you can’t drive without a shirt on, even if you don’t want to get sexually aroused.
This is because it’s a misdemeanour if being naked makes other people on the road upset, distracted, or scared.
Today’s article is for you if you don’t know if it’s legal to drive without a shirt in your state. Continue.
Is Driving Without a Shirt a Felony?
Depending on the state’s nudity laws, driving without a shirt is usually a misdemeanour or a felony.
Even though there is no federal law against indecent exposure, states are free to make and follow their own laws about it. In most US states, it is illegal for women to show their breasts in public, but men can drive around shirtless.
Only showing your genitalia or anus in public, in whole or in part, is against the law.
On the other hand, some states are very against female areolas being shown in public.
For example, in Arizona it can be a misdemeanour or a felony to drive with the top off. State laws make it clear that it is indecent exposure for someone to show their genitalia, anus, or a woman’s areola(s) in public and in front of someone who is offended by the defendant’s actions.
Also, it is a class 6 felony to expose a child younger than 15 years old to something that is not appropriate. Class 6 felony is the least serious type of felony, and the charges can include probation, fines, or a prison sentence of between 4 months and 5 years 9 months.
A class 1 misdemeanour is considered indecent exposure to a minor who is at least 15 years old.
The state of Michigan says that a woman can’t show her areolas in public unless she is breastfeeding or plans to start. Men, on the other hand, can drive shirtless as long as they don’t cause trouble.
Depending on how bad the act is, a person can go to jail for up to two years or pay a fine of $2,000 or less. Sexual offenders can spend anywhere from one day to the rest of their lives in prison.
Is the Interior of Your Car a Public Place?
Most states let people be rude on private property. If that’s the case, some people might think that since they’re in their cars, they can drive on public roads without a shirt on. Since the law considers a private car on a public road to be a public place, you will be arrested for being rude and offensive.
If you are driving or parked in a public place, you will have to follow the laws about public indecency, lewdness, and obscenity.
For example, a drunk driver who is stopped by the police in Indiana is guilty of public intoxication.
In the city of Seattle, you can do whatever you want, like drive a car while you’re naked. If you act in a way that makes someone else angry or uncomfortable, you will get arrested.
If you are on a private road or in a garage and no one else can see you, your car is technically a private space.
States That Are Illegal to Drive Topless
If, for example, you cross from a state that lets you drive without a shirt to one that doesn’t, you will get pulled over for indecent exposure.
For example, if you’re a woman crossing the border from Colorado into Utah, you might have to put on your top.
We all know that ignorance is no excuse. Here are the states where driving without a shirt is totally against the law, so you don’t get in trouble with the law.
States That Allow Driving Without a Shirt
Some states have public lands where people can be naked without getting in trouble. Some places let people be naked on the premises as long as they can’t be seen from a public place.
Some states have laws that say women can go shirtless anywhere men can.
Here is a list of the states that don’t have a top.
New York City
States That Have Ambiguous Laws on Shirtless Driving
In some U.S. states, it is legal to go shirtless in public, even to drive a car. However, there are laws against being naked in public.
Even though the ordinances are not legal on their own, they are still being followed unless they are challenged in court and upheld by the people.
Here is a list of states with laws that aren’t clear about driving without a shirt on.
The state of South Carolina
DC = Washington
Driving without a shirt will be looked at as an act of public lewdness, nudity, or disorderly conduct by the laws.
For example, Oklahoma’s public manners laws are still followed, even though the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a law in Fort Collins, Colorado that said women couldn’t go topless in public.
Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Wyoming, and Utah are all in the court’s area of responsibility. In a way, the decision of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals applies to all six states.
But Oklahoma is stubborn and only lets people be naked in certain situations, like when a woman is breastfeeding and shows her breasts.
The six states also give cities and towns the right to regulate or ban any kind of nudity in their areas.
Can You Be Arrested for Driving Without a Shirt in a Topless City?
Some of the topless cities in the US are Austin, Texas, Columbus, Ohio, New York City, and Portland, Oregon.
In these cities, it’s legal to drive without a shirt on, but the police might pull you over for being in a bad mood.
Driving without a shirt won’t change anything about how you drive. But if your exposed body makes other drivers feel uncomfortable or takes their attention away from the road, you can be arrested for driving while distracted.
Also, laws about driving without a top may seem vague, but in some US states and cities, people follow the rules to the letter.
Every state has its own rules about what exactly it means to be naked.
This is especially true in states that don’t have clear rules about how to dress while driving. Check the laws of the place you are going to before you go.