Rocks and rock chips are often launched into windshields as vehicles make their way down busy highways and byways. If you're lucky, the rock bounces off your windshield without damaging the glass. If you're not so fortunate, you end up with a huge crater or crack in your line of sight. If you're really unlucky, you get a completely broken windshield or door window out of the encounter.
In the moment, you may be dazed by your sudden collision with stone or too busy to stop and analyze the situation. There are three things you should remember to do if your windshield is ever struck by a rock, stone, or other flying debris.
Note the Details of Auto Glass Damage
In order to file a report, lodge a complaint, or make a claim related to windshield damage, you need to have all of the details ready to recite to an official. You'll have to have the details ready to copy on forms as well.
As soon as possible after the incident, make a recording or note listing the following facts about your windshield damage:
- Exact location of windshield hit
- Date of damage
- Exact time of incident
- Speed of your vehicle
- Weather and visibility conditions of road
- License plates of any responsible drivers
- Witnesses at scene
If you have video from a dash camera or other device, make a few copies for your insurance company, the authorities, and any companies involved. Keep the original video in a safe place.
Make Reports About Auto Glass Damage
No matter why your auto glass damage occurred, you must report it. Do not call 911 – instead, file a police report with the local or state authority patrolling the road where the glass was hit. If enough people report a company, the states will contact the negligent firm. Some states have forms to help you get contact information about the responsible party in a windshield case.
You must also file a claim with your insurance company as soon as possible to have your windshield replaced. Most auto insurance policies have generous windshield replacement plans, so you may not even need to pay a deductible.
There are a variety of reasons why random rocks and other debris end up sailing down the road toward unsuspecting drivers and their auto glass. In most cases, there's no malice intended, but there may be some negligence involved. For example, large construction trucks may kick up rocks because drivers are traveling too fast for conditions. Rocks could also tumble out of trailers that are not properly secured.
You should make police reports on companies responsible for this type of damage. You should also report the windshield or auto glass damage to the company you believe is responsible for the damage. Some companies pay out on these claims without argument – if you have solid proof their vehicles caused the windshield to break.
Sometimes, the issue can escalate and require extra attention and change. Recently in Idaho, rock chippers left stretches of a busy highway full of asphalt rocks and rock bits that damaged dozens of vehicle windshields. Officials were forced to cut the speed limit on this stretch of road from 65 mph to 45 mph to lessen the incidence of the auto glass breakage. The company will clean up the road and pay out damages those affected. The state and the rock chipper company took responsibility because drivers made enough reports.
Have the Windshield Properly Repaired
Replacing a windshield is a delicate and precise art. It's not a project for the do-it-yourselfer. Auto-glass glues, seals, primers, and the glass itself must all be handled and applied within specific limits to make the glass road-safe. Professional auto glass installers have the tools, training, and experience to replace or repair your windshield efficiently and safely.
Trust the pros at AMI Glass to repair your rock-damaged auto glass. We offer free mobile service and on-site estimates for windshield, rear window, and door glass replacement on all makes and models of vehicles and RVs. We also handle chip repairs, and we offer a lifetime warranty. Our services are further explained on our website, or you can call 817-590-0704 to learn more.