Is it illegal to wear headphones while driving in Florida?

Mon, Apr 9, 2012

General Legal Issues

Is it illegal to wear headphones while driving in Florida?Yes, it is illegal to wear most kinds of headsets/headphones while driving in Florida.

The Florida State Statutes address this issue in Title XXIII, Chapter 316. Statute 316.304 says this: “No person shall operate a vehicle while wearing a headset, headphone, or other listening device, other than a hearing aid or instrument for the improvement of defective human hearing.” Of course, it does go on to address specific exceptions to this law. These exceptions include:

  • Law enforcement and emergency personnel that use these types of devices for their work.
  • Motorcyclists taking a test under statute 322.12 (5).
  • Motorcyclists using a helmet-installed headset that allows the rider to hear outside sounds, since it is not specifically attached to the ears.
  • Driver using an approved cell phone headset in one ear, as long as the other ear is uncovered so the driver can hear sounds.
  • Driver using a device to communicate with a “central base operation” that only uses one ear, as long as the other ear is uncovered so the driver can hear sounds.

SmithLaw found an interesting site that compiles some Frequently Asked Questions about driving laws in various states at https://drivinglaws.aaa.com/. This site has a wealth of information about various laws about drivers’ licenses, headlights, bumpers, radar detectors, registrations, tags, cell phone use, and more.

Another great feature of the site is the ability to combine the information about certain laws for certain states all in one place. For example, if you are going on a trip through Florida, Georgia, and Alabama you can compile the information about certain laws into one report for all the states. Using this type of report, it looks like you are out of luck if you want to wear your headphones/headsets while driving in Georgia and Florida. But, AAA says you are able to wear it in Alabama!

 

Image credit: inkynobaka

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