There is a reason why headphones and cell phones shouldn’t be used at all times, especially when participating in already-dangerous activities. It’s well known that the devices are known to be a distraction and cause unnecessary accidents. There is an accident caused by cell phones nearly every day.
Sixteen-year-old Bradley Willoughby from Queensland, Australia is quite the dare devil. He enjoys riding his motorbike on his parent’s farm. It’s no surprise that motorbiking is a dangerous activity, but when done with the use of a cell phone and headphones that block out noise, the combination can be lethal.
As Willoughby was cruising around the farm, he had thought he was well-equipped and safe with his helmet and proper gear, but all it took was one tiny accessory, and his life was in danger. When landing a jump awkwardly, the bike’s throttle got stuck and he flew into a barbed wire fence that outlined the farm. While the impact of the landing broke and dislocated his ankle and slit open his stomach, the worst part of the damage was above his shoulders.
Unfortunately, Willoughby had earbuds in his ears and they were secured beneath his helmet. So, while he was doing the right thing by wearing a helmet, the addition of the earbuds created a major problem…they didn’t pop out. When he hit the barbed wire fence, the rubber coating of the chord was pulled off, revealing the very strong copper wires. Since the buds were still in place and the chord was dangling in front of his neck, the impact of the force nearly caused the chord to decapitate him.
As the family was waiting for the medevac to arrive, his father had to remove the wires out from his throat. He was one lucky boy, as the chords narrowly missed his trachea. While Bradley has a long road of recovery ahead of him, he is lucky to have survived such a chance accident. He had operations on his leg and neck and is on his road to recovering fully.
Willoughby’s mother said that the boy had been a competent and cautious driver and she wasn’t aware that the headphones could pose such a danger. Now, she is cautioning the public about the dangers associated with the use of headphones during these types of sports. “Do not wear wired earphones under a motorbike helmet, it’s potentially life threatening,” she cautioned.
Listening to music on headphones is also dangerous when driving any type of vehicle because it lowers your chances of hearing dangerous warnings such as other approaching vehicles. The same goes for riding a bike and skateboarding. Even if you are mountain biking far away from any type of traffic or public transportation, you have the threat of coming across wild animals or running into fellow hikers or bikers. Having music blasting in your ears limits your chances of hearing these warnings.
So, for future reference, it’s probably best to tuck your cell phone away securely and keep the headphones at home when you are participating in such a potentially dangerous activity.