Driving with your music blasting might make you feel like you are on top of the world. But you won’t feel that way when a police officer flips on their lights and pulls you over. Many people don’t realize that listening to loud music while driving can be very dangerous, increasing the chance of driving irresponsibly and getting into a car accident.
Driving with the music turned up too loud can distract a driver. In fact, some studies found that loud music can negatively impact a driver’s reaction time, increasing the likelihood of not braking soon enough, or failing to dodge an obstacle in the road.
Listening to music that is too loud while driving is so dangerous that some cities and municipalities prohibit driving with loud music. In Nevada, listening to loud music can be considered distracted driving, and it could be the reason for a citation.
Is It Illegal to Play Loud Music While Driving?
The simple answer is: It’s complicated. There is no universal law across the country, but several individual counties or cities classify listening to loud music as distracted driving, which is a traffic infraction.
You likely won’t get pulled over just for blasting your radio, but you could get pulled over for zoning out while listening to your music and running a red light. If you were listening to loud music at the time, the officer could write you up an additional ticket for the loud music. It’s best to turn the stereo down a few notches to avoid the risk altogether.
Every county has its own definition of what music is too loud while driving. In some areas, the driver could receive a ticket if the music can be heard from 75 feet away. In other cities, the distance is 50 feet.
These laws were put in place to protect drivers, pedestrians, and others from serious car crashes that could leave to critical injuries or fatalities.
Effects of Loud Music on Driving Performance
Researchers have studied the effects of loud music on driving. A Canadian research study discovered that loud music delayed people’s reaction times. In the study, people who were listening to loud music took 20% longer to complete mental and physical tasks compared to those who were not listening to loud music.
The tempo of the music impacts the driver, too. One study performed by Warren Brodsky at Ben-Gurion University found that drivers who listened to music with a tempo of 120 beats per minute were more likely to drive recklessly.
They were twice as likely to run a red light compared to those listening to slower tempo songs, and they experienced twice as many accidents than those listening to slower-paced songs. As drivers listened to loud, fast music, their heart rates sped up and they started to drive faster without realizing it.
Teen drivers are especially at risk of being impacted by loud music. One study found that teenagers who listened to loud music made more driving errors, including speeding and weaving.
Loud music also hinders drivers’ ability to detect emergency sirens from fire trucks and ambulances. One driver in Salt Lake City crashed into an ambulance because they could not hear the sirens over their music.
Distracted driving accidents often take place in high-speed situations. Because drivers listening to loud music have delayed reaction times and are more likely to speed, they can be very dangerous. The consequences of distracted driving due to loud music can be devastating.
Legal Help for Distracted Driving Incidents
Being involved in a car accident can be a life-altering event. Car accidents can cause physical injuries that lead to expensive hospital bills and time spent away from work. If you or a loved one was involved in a car accident caused by distracted driving, including someone playing music too loud, don’t hesitate to seek legal help. You might be able to receive compensation to help you make a full recovery.
The auto accident lawyers at Shook & Stone have decades of experience handling cases just like yours. Our personal injury lawyers have the knowledge to navigate all of Nevada’s distracted driving laws, and we will fight for you and your rights. Contact us today to learn about the first steps you should take to get the outcome you deserve. Give us a call at 702-570-0000 24/7 to receive a free consultation.