Driving with headphones or earbuds can be a tempting alternative to a broken Bluetooth adapter or a lackluster radio selection. However, unlike playing music through your car’s speakers, driving with headphones on can drastically reduce your ability to hear what’s going on around you—and this can be deadly.

Don’t Drive Under the Influence (of Headphones)

Although we don’t always think about it, our sense of hearing plays an important role on the road. Noise cues us in to the speed of nearby cars, the functionality of our own vehicle, and, most importantly, the state of our surroundings. Being able to hear and react quickly to car horns, police sirens, and train whistles could be the difference between a life-threatening car crash and getting to that work meeting on time.

Don’t put yourself and others at risk by wearing headphones, earplugs, or anything else that impedes your ability to hear what’s going on around you.

When to Wear Headsets While Driving

While you shouldn’t be listening to your favorite tunes through headphones, some situations may warrant the use of headsets while driving. The use of hearing aids, single cellular ear pieces, or one-sided headsets for communicating with your vehicle can be considered safe and acceptable under certain circumstances.

If you’re unsure of what’s considered safe to wear and what isn’t, do your research ahead of time. Regardless of what ear device you’re using while driving, prioritize your safety and the safety of others by always being cognizant of the road.

Know Your State’s Laws

Before you get behind the wheel wearing any kind of headset or ear device, make sure you know your state’s laws. Be sure to check AAA for a comprehensive list of state-by-state headset laws.

As always, be sure to practice safe driving, and don’t take any chances by wearing headphones unless absolutely necessary. Contact us at Hogan Injury if you ever need any assistance in understanding driving laws.

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