Ask RACQ: is it legal to drive with headphones in?

From time to time the question gets asked is it legal to drive with headphones in and, if so, is there a difference in law, dependent on licence level?

ANSWER: In Queensland, P1 licence holders under 25 years of age and P1 probationary licence holders aren’t allowed to use wireless headsets or any other hands-free system with their phone, including loudspeaker functions, while driving.

Apart from that, there’s no law in Queensland specifically preventing you from using headphones while driving, but we would always advise against doing so.

You must drive with due care and attention and with reasonable consideration for other road users.

If people see you driving with headphones in and you’re involved in a crash, it might be argued that you couldn’t hear what was going on around you. Therefore, you weren’t paying enough attention to the driving task or being sufficiently considerate of other road users.

Being charged with careless driving or driving without due care and attention is serious, so to help reduce the chances of that happening, it’s best to stay away from your headphones while driving.