Q: Are wearing headphones a bad idea while driving a motorcycle?
Finally, after four long months you get to open your motorcycle up on 29. It is a beautiful day, so you put on your leather jacket, place your headphones in your ears, throw on your helmet, and push play on your “Open Road” playlist. Nothing could be better than rocking out to The Byrds while feeling the wind on your face—except for maybe, making it home alive.
No matter how careful or alert you think you are, headphones pose an extremely hazardous threat to both you and to the people around you.
Dangers of Wearing Headphones
The number one danger of motorcycling with headphones is that they can prevent you from hearing warning signs around you—such as other cars, sirens, pedestrians and traffic signals (railroad bells). However, if this was not enough to keep you from using them, they pose additional threats as well:
- Distractions – When riding a motorcycle, the slightest noise could pull your attention to the right or left—and where your attention goes, your bike goes. So imagine if one ear of your headphones is louder than the other, or the background singers are softer in one ear and the lead is in the other, are you willing to take the chance that it will not affect your driving? Well, for the sake of those around you, you should not be.
- Hearing loss – Can occur because of the headphones being compressed in the ears by the helmet in addition to high volume settings to combat the noise of the motorcycle.
Not only is it obviously dangerous to wear headphones in both ears while driving, it’s also illegal in the state of Maryland. So the next time you strap your helmet, leave the headphones at home. Instead, opt for handlebar speakers or helmet speakers that distribute noise evenly, softly, and safely.
Have you recently been injured by a distracted motorcyclist who was wearing headphones? Contact us today for a free consultation about whether you are entitled to damages and/or compensation for your injury.
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