Halloween 101: Can I Wear a Mask While Driving?
The above sounds like a strange question, but with Halloween on the horizon, it's the perfect time to get a little bit freaky.
Well, as long as you're safe.
Which is why it's important to ask whether a designated driver can wear a mask while driving. And whether the benefits (Amusement? Convenience?) of doing so outweigh the risks.
Now, you probably won’t find an exact statute in your state’s vehicle code, but chances are you still can’t wear a mask while driving.
Take a look at the section regulating reckless driving. It probably says that it’s illegal to drive in such a way that demonstrates a willful disregard for the safety of others. When you wear a mask while driving, it’s arguable that you’re doing just that.
Even the smallest mask can obscure the entirety of your periphery vision. A mask will also limit the amount of light you use to see. Obstructing your view in such a way is incredibly dangerous.
It’s generally also not a very good idea. Police are more likely to pull you over, even on Halloween. Wearing a mask while driving makes it appear as though you’re hiding your identity.
Which is another problem. A number of states make it illegal to wear a mask if you are trying to evade identification by law enforcement. Some, such as Georgia and New York, simply state that you cannot wear a mask in public except on Halloween or Mardi Gras.
Others, like North Carolina, flat out ban masks for anyone over the age of 16. This includes masks worn on roads, which would apply to drivers.
Between the dangers and potential criminal liability, it’s best not to wear a mask while driving. Even if you think it might be legal to do so.
- Reckless Driving (FindLaw)
- Distracted Driving (FindLaw)
- Halloween 101: Are Nunchucks Legal? (FindLaw Blotter)
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