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When driving your car, you may find yourself listening to some music whilst you travel – but playing your music at an excessive volume may bring about some unseen consequences. While drivers are aware that they can be fined for speeding or running a red light, many are unfamiliar with the penalties associated with playing loud music.
Playing loud music can have a variety of effects on your driving, this includes:
Speeding – Listening to fast, upbeat music makes you subconsciously drive faster, especially when you are driving down country lanes or on motorways. You may get slapped with a speeding fine without even realising you were speeding.
Distraction – When you’re enjoying listening or singing along to music, it’s likely you won’t have your full attention on the road. It is important to have no distractions whilst driving, as to not break any laws and avoid any other dangerous drivers. Furthermore, adjusting the volume means you have to take your eyes off the road, which can have fatal consequences even if it’s just for a few seconds.
Inhibits your awareness – Playing music is perfectly safe, but having it playing so loud that you can’t hear what’s going on around you can be very dangerous. Drowning out the sound cues such as the sirens of emergency service vehicles and other car horns will impair the quality of your driving, putting yourself and others in danger.
In recent years, there has been a push to reduce the amount of misconduct taking place in public areas. As part of an initiative to reduce anti-social behaviour, motorists could be fined up to £100 for playing their music especially loud. Earlier this year Bradford council introduced a trial which saw drivers playing loud music and revving their engines being fined, in response to a survey which saw 1,200 say they felt unsafe on the city’s streets due to poor driving – with many specifying noise as an issue.
Although the councils initiative is backed by over three quarters of Bradford residents, there has been some backlash against this new law, as some are questioning how it will be enforced. How loud will be too loud, and will police officers have the power to pull drivers off the road?
Police officers won’t be able to pull someone over for playing loud music unless they have reason to believe it is causing a distraction to the motorist. It’s important to keep this new law in mind when playing loud music in your car, as well as being aware of the potentially dangerous effect it could have on your driving ability.
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