Rock throwing cases along I-35 in Austin, Texas have been in the news lately and are concerning to the citizens of Austin, as well as the police. As of February 1, 2016 there have been over 60 incidents of large rocks being thrown at moving vehicles, severely damaging windshields, and occasionally injuring drivers and passengers inside cars.
“The fact that there hasn’t been a death — I think we are just lucky at this point,” said Asst. Chief McIlvain. “This kind of a crime, it’s extremely serious and we take it as serious as someone trying to kill somebody.”
When police initially started investigating the rock throwing cases, they believed the rocks were being thrown off overpasses and bridges. They now believe the rocks are being thrown from moving cars on the opposite side of the highway. Asst. Chief McIlvain recommends drivers use the outside lanes when possible. “If a rock was coming over, you have a little bit further distance, and then the accuracy might be off.” (via KXAN).
If you are hit, police say it’s very important to pull over immediately and call 911. This can help the police find and arrest those responsible for these crimes.
Windshield breakage falls under the comprehensive coverage on your auto insurance. Unlike a hit and run accident, a rock that is thrown from another vehicle and causes bodily injury to a driver and passengers inside the car is not covered under uninsured motorist coverage. In order for uninsured motorist coverage to apply to an accident, 2 vehicles must come into contact with each other. Rock throwing is more like vandalism, which is covered under comprehensive coverage.
Related Article: When Not To File A Windshield Damage Claim
Personal injury protection or medical payments provides protection up to coverage limits for bodily injury to a driver and all passengers in a vehicle. In the state of Texas, personal injury protection is an optional coverage, but I recommend carrying personal injury protection coverage to protect you and your passengers in the event of bodily injury after any accident–whether or not it is your fault.
It’s always a good idea to review your auto policy coverages to make sure that you have the coverages you and your family need.