Every Friday consumer reporter Lynda Steele dips into the CTV mailbag to answer viewer questions. This week, Steele on Your Side looks at using headphones while driving and a bill-paying secret Santa.

Wearing headphones while driving

Distracted driving has gained a lot of attention in the media these days. David called Steele on Your Side wanting to know if it’s legal to wear headphones while driving.

According to the BC Superintendent of Motor Vehicles, headphones can be used while driving, but only for the purpose of hands-free communication. That means listening to music on your headphones while behind the wheel is illegal. All music must come through your vehicle's sound system.

As well, headphones must only be worn in one ear, and you must put it into your ear before you start driving. If you're caught breaking these laws you could be fined $167.

Secret Santa pays BC Hydro bill

Karen wrote CTV News after attempting to make a random act of kindness. Karen wanted to anonymously pay the BC Hydro bill of a family struggling to make ends meet at Christmas. She was shocked to discover BC Hydro wouldn't let her. She says she was told it would violate the family’s privacy. 

Steele on Your Side contacted BC Hydro and was told the company has to be careful how it conducts these sort of generous behaviours. But after a couple of days we heard back from the utility giant.

BC Hydro said it was happy to report that it was able to have Karen make the payment on a third-party account without jeopardizing any privacy policies.