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Jogging with Earbuds - Jones Law Group

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Jogging with Earbuds

Jogging has remained enormously popular since the 1970s. It continues to attract thousands of enthusiasts each year and the St. Petersburg / Clearwater / Tampa area has an ideal climate for jogging, year round. In addition to climate considerations, there are numerous parks and the nearly 40 mile Pinellas County Trail available for joggers to use. There are also thousands of miles of sidewalks used by joggers in St. Petersburg. However, I have noticed a disturbing number of joggers running along the shoulders of roads with headphones or earbuds on. These joggers rarely seem to notice approaching traffic and seem lost in a phenomenon known as “iPod Oblivion.”

Is Jogging with Earbuds Safe?

There are literally hundreds of earbuds and/or earphones which taut there usefulness to joggers. Magazines and websites[1] compare the quality of music that can be heard through each set. The noise cancelling ability of each pair is tested and rated. I have not seen one of these authors question whether the ability to cancel out the noise of the road through puddles of sweat should be the goal. Is it wise to run with earbuds? Though the studies are sparse, they seem to indicate that wearing earphones is dangerous for the jogger.[2] The limited data seems to indicate that joggers are 3 times as likely to be involved in an accident if they are wearing headphones. Surprisingly, 1/3 of injured earbud wearers were struck by trains when they failed to hear the horn. The injuries suffered by distracted joggers can be severe and include:

1. Death;
2. Traumatic brain injury and/or concussions;
3. Spinal cord damage and/or paralysis;
4. Disfigurement;
5. Fractured or broken bones;
6. Nerve damage;
7. Lacerations, contusions and road rash; and
8. Neck and back injuries.

Are Women and Children More at Risk?

When I started writing this blog, I really only intended to discuss the unintended interactions between joggers wearing earphones and vehicles. However, as I wrote I found myself being concerned for the distracted jogger or pedestrian finds themselves in a dangerous situation created by mugger or even rapist. Though not usually illegal, just about every college in the nation recommends its students not walk, jog or bicycle with headphones. Numerous other reputable sites recommend women not wear headphones as part of a rape prevention strategy. It is simply a wise course of action for pedestrians, joggers and bicyclists to always be aware of their surroundings.

If You Are Hit While Jogging with Headphones, Whose Fault is It?

Obviously, you are never at fault for the intentional acts of another. If struck by a car while wearing earbuds or headphones, it will still be necessary to investigate all of the facts and make a determination on a case by case basis. In my opinion, wearing earphones will not make you more likely to cause an accident, but it may render you unavailable to avoid an accident. Make an appointment and one of the lawyers at The Law Offices of Bobby Jones will be happy to analyze your case free of charge.

Contact Jones Law Group

Have you or a loved one been injured in a bicycle, pedestrian or car accident? Contact an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury attorney at Jones Law Group today. When you contact our office we will immediately set an appointment where you will meet your attorney and be provided with his/her personal contact information. If you do not have transportation or you cannot drive, your attorney will travel to meet you and discuss your case with you.

Whether you were a pedestrian, a bicyclist, or the occupant of car, motorcycle or boat and have been injured in an accident, you should immediately call an experienced personal injury attorney in St. Petersburg at Jones Law Group at (727) 571-1333 during regular business hours or (727) 753-8657 on weekends or after regular business hours. We will evaluate your case for free and you will never pay us a dime unless we recover compensation for your injuries.

Jones Law Group
5622 Central Avenue
St. Pete, FL 33707



[1] http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2410143,00.asp

[1] http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/early/2012/01/03/injuryprev-2011-040161.short

About the Author

Heath Murphy is a partner at Jones Law Group and focuses on personal injury law. He has been working as a lawyer for 18 years and routinely writes about auto accidents, wrongful death, and personal injury laws.

Read more: Heath’s Bio