Is it Illegal to Wear Headphones While Driving?

Is it illegal to wear headphones while driving? the short answer: yes! Believe it or not, there is a California Vehicle code that prohibits those who are operating a motor vehicle as well as a riding a bicycle from wearing headphones. According to our accident attorney, this law took effect January 1st 2016. We should note that you can have an earbud in one ear, however wearing headphones is both will receive fine of $197.00 if caught. Below is a more in depth description of California Roadway Vehicle Code 27400.

Four Major Points

  1. A person who violates Vehicle Code 27400 will receive a fine of $197.00;
  2. Any violator of this code section will also receive one point on their DMV driving record. a person risks getting a negligent operator license suspension if they get 4 points in a 12 month period, 6 points in 24 months, or 8 points in 36 months;
  3. You can challenge the ticket by raising a legal defense;
  4. You cannot ignore this ticket if issued. Ignoring a traffic ticket in California can result in additional charges such as failure to appear; which means you can then be charged with a misdemeanor.

Five Exceptions

Like anything, there are some exceptions to the rule. Those include the following:

  • Those operating an authorized emergency vehicle;
  • Someone operating special construction equipment or equipment used in the maintenance of a highway;
  • A person engaged in the operation of refuse collection equipment who is wearing a safety headset or earplugs;
  • A person wearing hearing protectors in the form of earplugs or molds that are specifically designed to lessen dangerous noise levels;
  • Someone who uses a hearing aid

What may seem to be a trivial law, may end up getting you a point or two on your license. Especially if you are caught. as car accident lawyers, we always suggest that people due their due diligence in keeping themselves and others safe on the road.

If you have been injured due to the negligent actions of another, please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss your case.

Consultations with a car accident lawyer are free!