Are You Allowed To Drive With a Broken Windshield in Colorado?


You are driving, and out of nowhere, a piece of gravel flies into your windshield and causes a penny-sized crack. Next thing you know, that small dent is now a large crack, and you need a new windshield. But can you drive with your windshield cracked, or is it against the law? Get answers from a lawyer and learn when you should hire one after a car accident.

Is It Illegal to Drive With a Broken Windshield?

In Colorado, there are no specific laws addressing broken windshields, which means it is not necessarily illegal to drive with a broken or cracked windshield. However, Colorado statutes do require drivers to have an unobstructed view of the road through their windshield.

C.R.S. 42-4-201 states, “No vehicle shall be operated upon any highway unless the driver’s vision through any required glass equipment is normal and unobstructed.” This means that if you are pulled over and given a ticket for a broken windshield, it may have been because the police officer believed the damaged windshield was causing an obstruction.

Are There Any Federal Laws Addressing Cracked Windshields?

While Colorado may not have specific laws addressing broken windshields, there are Federal laws on the subject. The Federal Highway Administration requires the area above the steering wheel to be free of obstructions.

More specifically, federal laws require a crack that exceeds a quarter-inch width or is intersected by another crack to be repaired. The same goes for a penny-sized crack or damaged area. So there is a chance that a police officer might give you a ticket for a damaged windshield based on these federal laws.

What Happens if My Cracked Windshield Was Caused by a Car Accident?

If your broken windshield was a result of a car accident caused by someone else, you may be able to receive compensation for all of your damages. In this case, the at-fault driver’s insurance may cover repairs to your windshield and should also cover the repair and replacement of any other damaged parts of your vehicle. You should contact a car accident attorney, such as the ones at Mann Wyatt Tanksley Injury Attorneys, to learn your options to recover full compensation for your car accident. We can help you prove your case and conduct negotiations with the insurance company.

Contact us at (620) 662-2400.