It is an appealing idea to shut out the sound of traffic while driving and focus on your favorite music through headphones or earbuds. It gives you pleasure without annoying other people in the car. However, there is a problem. Earphones and headphones are among the most dangerous forms of distracted driving and have been blamed for scores of serious injuries and fatalities.
How Headphones Prove Fatal
Highway safety authorities explain that wired or wireless headphones and earphones are dangerous because they do two things:
- First, the music distracts from what is happening around you. You are in another world.
- Second, you hear less because of the noise canceling effects from a set of earbuds. They cause you to miss critical cues to other facts in your environment, such as an approaching car or truck, an ambulance siren, or a honking horn.
Simply put, drivers need to pay attention to driving. Losing focus is at the heart of all distracted driving car accidents.
Certain states have banned the use of headphones and earphones altogether, such as Maryland, Rhode Island, Ohio, and Louisiana. Pennsylvania forbids headphones or earbuds. However, the law makes just two exceptions, hearing aids and single-ear headsets connecting to a cellphone.
Not Just Drivers
Headphone offenders are not just drivers of automobiles and motorcycles, although state law is only directed at them. Joggers, bikers, skaters, skateboarders, and scooter riders also use them. Likewise, they are commonly used on boats. The pleasure of hearing your favorite tunes is great, but not worth endangering your passengers or others on the road.
Safety experts describe three main types of distractions. Wearing headphones and earbuds while driving involves all three types.
The first is visual distraction, which include any activity that involves taking your eyes off the road, from checking the time on your cell phone to changing stations on the radio. Keep your eyes on the road.
The second is manual distraction, which include taking your hands off the wheel, eating a hamburger, or adjusting your seat belt. Keep your hands on the wheel.
The third type is cognitive distraction, which can happen in your mind and cause you to be distracted from your number one task of driving safely. We all have thoughts, worries, and ideas, but it is critical to focus your brain on the business of staying alive.
Delaware County Car Accident Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Represent Victims Injured in Distracted Driving Accidents
If you or someone you love was injured in a distracted driving accident, talk to an experienced Delaware County car accident lawyer at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. today. Our dedicated team is available to evaluate your case to determine what type of compensation may be available to you. Call us at 610-565-3701 today or contact us online. With offices located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we work with clients throughout Delaware County, Chester County, Montgomery County, and throughout the Philadelphia metropolitan area.