Using Headphones While Driving
Take this advice from a local auto accident lawyer, Wearing headphones while driving is one of the most dangerous things you can do while behind the wheel. While having headphones in your ears is not illegal in the state of Texas, it is possible to receive a ticket or citation for “dangerous driving.”
Some of the excuses used to justify listening to headphones while driving include wearing a Bluetooth device for hands-free talking on the phone and using them for navigation. While there can be a case made for these excuses, there are still steps that should be taken to make this safer for yourself as well as other drivers on the road with you.
Sight is not the only sense our minds use while responsibly driving a vehicle. Our ability to hear noises in our surroundings also plays a huge part when it comes to being safe on the road. Train whistles, sirens, horns, even screeching tires are all sounds that are used to get our attention. Because of this, we need to make sure we are able to clearly hear at all times.
If you are going to use headphones while operating a vehicle, only use one of the earbuds of the device. You will typically want the bud in your right ear, furthest away from the driver side window. While you want to be able to hear whatever it is you’re listening to, make sure the volume is turned low enough that it is not the only sound you’re able to recognize.
Also, if you are driving while listening to headphones, make sure you are still being attentive to the road. You can do this by giving a quick glance at each of the mirrors in your car, one at a time. While it’s important not to give too much attention to your mirrors, give a long enough glance to make sure you’re fully aware of what is going on both behind and beside you.
Also, if you’re going to be driving while listening to your headphones, consider rolling down your window to better hear what is going on outside of your vehicle. Find a comfortable medium between the volume of your headset and the noises from the road. This gives you a better chance of staying alert and being more familiar with what is going on around your vehicle while you’re driving. This also demonstrates that you are taking responsibility for doing your part to keep the roads safe as a motorist.
If you are involved in an accident while listening to your headphones, remember, this doesn’t always mean that you’re automatically at fault. While you want to be honest, you also don’t want to incriminate yourself by saying something that doesn’t need to be said. Contact a car accident attorney immediately with details and information about the accident and talk to them about their professional opinion and the laws in place to protect you.
Follow the same steps and procedures you would involving any other accident, but don’t discuss any more than you have to, especially with the other party’s insurance company or legal representative. Simply provide them with the contact information of your insurance company and the attorney you have hired to represent yourself.