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Question DetailsAsked on 8/14/2012

The state was mowing on the side of the road and a rock was thrown by the machine into my windshield? How do i get them to pay for this?

Highway Maintenance




small claims

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3 Answers


Hi, nickbernal89. We're really sorry to
hear about your windshield. Angie's List does not offer legal advice, but we recommend that you talk with your insurance company first and consult your state's department of transportation website.

Answered 7 years ago by HughV


I use to work for a City and one of my duties was operating a mower. Yes, contact the state road department. Sometimes, they will work with you and make things right. I would suggest that you contact them first, before you contact your insurance company.


Answered 7 years ago by leakdetective


As other comment said - contact the state first, because any contact with your insurance company about a possible claim, with many or most carriers, counts as a claim even if they pay out nothing or even if a formal claim is not made, which can make your rates go up for typically about 3-5 years. And windshield would commonly be close to or even under your deductible amount anyway so a claim might yield you little or no actual coverage in exchange for higher rates.

Proper procedure would be as with any auto accident - return to the scene, contact the operator, exchange name and license and insurance info - if like most state mowing operations he should have cards with him with the contact info printed on it for the damage claims person at the state, and probably a damage claim form he has to fill out with you to go to the state highway department. And since THEY caused the damage, THEIR insurance (usually they self-insure) would pay, not yours.

They have reimbursement procedures for this - it is not uncommon with deck mowers and brushhogs to break or dent things during their work - and they should cover the enitre reasonable cost, though may dictate which glass place does the repair work.

Note - this is for rocks/debris coming off of (like falling off a dumptruck) or discharged by operating state equipment, provided you are not within the danger zone (usually a Stay Back 50 Feet sign) on graders and plows and sand trucks and such. But generally speaking, a vehicle throwing up debris with its tires off the travelled roadway (as opposed to throwing themm from the median or shoulder), which were already on the road (like sand or gravel put down for traction or loose items that have fallen onto the road from other users) is NOT responsible for the damage - that is considered normal road hazard to be paid by you or your insurance.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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