A chipped windshield is more than an aggravation, it can be costly. So is there a way to avoid getting rock chips?
Well, you can’t prevent all rock chips, but good driving habits can help protect your windshield.
You have probably seen construction trucks with signs that say, “Not Responsible for Broken Windshields — Stay back 200 feet”.
Gravel trucks are supposed to have tarps tied down over the top of the bed, but many tarps are torn or worn out so they have no way to keep dirt, rocks, and other objects from flying out.
All it takes is a vehicle driving over the rock to shoot it into someone’s windshield. If you are tailgating, you are more likely to get hit with flying debris.
You can avoid windshield damage and auto glass claims by following one simple rule: Don’t Tailgate Gravel Trucks!
Who is At Fault?
It is the truck driver’s responsibility to make sure no debris is falling off their truck. The blame lies with trucking companies and drivers being irresponsible about replacing worn out tarps and covers and keeping the trucks clean.
If you get a chipped windshield from rocks flying off a truck, you have to prove who is at fault. In this video from CW-33 Dallas, DPS officer Lonny Haschel explains why this is difficult to do.
The best advice is to head the warning signs…to protect your auto glass, stay back at least 200 feet. So how much distance is that? It can be hard to visualize, so here is something that will help.
200 Feet equals:
- two-thirds the length of a football field
- 12.5 car lengths
That makes it obvious that you need to be a great distance behind these trucks to be safe.
There are still many complaints from drivers that no matter how far back they were or what lane they were in, the still got pelted with flying rocks.
Even so, by following this one simple rule — don’t tailgate gravel trucks — it will definitely reduce your risk of getting a chipped windshield.
If you do get a rock chip, call GlassLogic Windshield Repair right away so the damage doesn’t spread and crack out your windshield.
ROCKS DO NOT FLY. They do fall off the frame and come out of the tread. This happens from non-commercial vehicles also. Often they are flicked from on-coming traffic. I have had a huge hit on my commercial truck with no one in sight but a vehicle just went by going the other way.
Tarps are for sand and brush that, if the truck was sitting still and the wind was blowing these items could, and do, fly off the vehicle. Thus they could, and do, fly out when the vehicle is in motion.
That being said, some companies and drivers do not maintain the seal on the dump doors of gates. depending on the looseness gravel of many sizes can leak out of loose gates/doors. Gravel can also leak out of holes in the floor of the dump bed.
Pieces of bark from log trucks can do the same as a rock.
Thanks for your expert explanation, Mike!