Many drivers worry about a cracked windshield. Aside from blocking their line of sight, they also fear that they may get a traffic ticket because of it. Depending on what state you’re in, a cracked windshield may actually land you with a traffic ticket. Each state has its own laws concerning the extent of damage that will be penalized.
Penalties for driving with a cracked windshield could be anywhere between $100 to a few thousand. Take note, though, that these laws aren’t intended to make your life miserable. These are in place to protect drivers and passengers from potential harm. So instead of paying for traffic tickets, you might as well invest in professional repairs. After all, dodging repairs only exposes your car to more harm.
The risk associated with cracked windshields
A small windshield crack could be harmless at first, but when it starts to spread, your safety will be at risk. Cracked windshields are penalized because of the following risks they impose:
For extensive cracks, your line of vision will be obstructed. Driving will become more difficult, especially if sunlight strikes the glass. Cracks will produce blinding streaks of light, which will make driving dangerous, especially on the highway.
This added distraction becomes worse over time as the cracks start to spread. Remember that you can only put off professional repairs for a specific period. If you continue to avoid repairs, you will be exposed to further harm.
Risk of the windshield caving in
Your car’s windshield supports the structural integrity of your vehicle. However, when it sustains cracks, your windshield becomes less tolerant of temperature shifts and the force associated with curves.
If you happen to encounter a blind and sudden curve, your heavily cracked windshield will cave in. Also, during the winter season, it will only take a thick layer of snow for the glass to come off.
Poor airbag deployment
Your car’s windshield plays a big role in the deployment of your airbags. If you have a cracked windshield, the airbag may cause the glass to cave in. When this happens, the airbag will inflate outward instead of inward to protect you from the impact.
Poor force distribution in the event of a collision
Again, your car’s windshield is more than just a protection against outdoor elements while you’re driving. It’s also added protection for you in the event of a collision. The glass disperses the force to prevent your vehicle from being crushed.
If your windshield is filled with cracks, you’re exposing you and your passengers to increased risk. You should never wait for an accident or a traffic ticket to be issued before you have your windshield repaired.
Cracked windshields may get you a traffic ticket. But, most of all, they expose you and your passengers to more danger while driving. Although it will cost a fee, professional repairs offer better security. They have licensed technicians that will deal with the cracks properly. Besides, your insurance policy could be covering the damage.