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Is it legal/safe to drive with a cracked windcreen?
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# 1
pookienoodle
Old 18-08-2009, 6:22 PM
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Default Is it legal/safe to drive with a cracked windcreen?

While driving today something hit my windscreen and caused it to crack,my insurance company put me in touch with Autoglass who cannot replace my windscreen until sometime on Thursday.
When I moaned this was a long time as I need the car to take my disabled husband to a hospital appointment tomorrow I was told it was safe and legal to drive a car with a cracked windscreen passenger side.
this seems to be different to what Autoglass have on their website.
quote
"A windscreen provides 30% of a car’s structural strength and if damaged by a crack, it requires a complete and immediate replacement"
So can anyone please tell me is it safe and legal?
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# 2
DaveF327
Old 18-08-2009, 6:36 PM
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It is safe providing you don't roll the car over or a tree or similar doesn't fall on it. The structural strength referred to only comes into play if you flip the car over (or something heavy falls on the roof) and the windscreen prevents the roof caving in and squashing you.

It is legal providing the driver has a clear and unobscured view of the road. MOT experts will confirm how big the crack has to be to fail the MOT test, based on which 'zone' the crack is in. If it's on the passenger side, it will be in the zone where a larger crack is allowed.

Websites will always exaggerate the worst case scenario as part of a sales pitch.

Last edited by DaveF327; 18-08-2009 at 6:39 PM.
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# 3
Chippy Minton
Old 18-08-2009, 7:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pookienoodle View Post
So can anyone please tell me is it safe and legal?

Without seeing it who can say if it's safe.

Legal? Well you could face a £30-00 ticket if stopped or have to attend court. It an offence despite what Dave says.
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# 4
DaveF327
Old 18-08-2009, 7:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chippy Minton View Post
you could face a £30-00 ticket if stopped or have to attend court. It an offence despite what Dave says.
Like I said, it depends on the size of the crack. I was quoting from reg.104 of the 1986 Construction and Use regulations. Care to quote your source?
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# 5
Chippy Minton
Old 18-08-2009, 7:49 PM
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Regulation 104 of the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986 makes
it an offence for a person to drive a motor vehicle if he or she cannot have proper
control of the vehicle. Anyone "causing or permitting" a driver not to have proper
control, such as an employer requiring an employee to drive a vehicle which they
cannot properly control, is also liable for prosecution. It is reportedly the intention of
the police, in the event of a serious, or fatal, road traffic accident to seize any mobile
phone found in the vehicle, or in the drivers possession, for purposes of checking to
see if the device was ‘in use’ at the time of the accident.

Care to expand on yours?
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# 6
DaveF327
Old 18-08-2009, 7:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chippy Minton View Post
Regulation 104 of the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986 makes
it an offence for a person to drive a motor vehicle if he or she cannot have proper
control of the vehicle...
Quote:
Originally Posted by remainder of regulation 104
...or have a full view of the road and traffic ahead.
You need the whole regulation for it to make sense in the context of this thread. I presume you pulled that from a police website or similar which quoted part of the regulation to expand on some other topic.
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# 7
Chippy Minton
Old 18-08-2009, 9:08 PM
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OK, well I stated the OP may be liable for a ticket. The offence would be worded as "Glass not as perscribed". Can you tell me where the con and use regs perscribe the fitting of a cracked windscreen?
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# 8
Nilrem
Old 18-08-2009, 9:16 PM
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IIRC if it's cracked badly enough to fail an MOT, it's bad enough for the police to potentially do something about it (ranging from failure to maintain glass, to dangerous condition), with the penalties ranging from a defect notice to potentially the magistrates if it's really bad/you're in an accident where the condition of the glass might be a contributing factor.

Personally, it's not something i'd be happy about driving with (a badly cracked windscreen)
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# 9
jeannieblue
Old 18-08-2009, 9:23 PM
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Pop into your local garage/MOT station and ask them to take a look. And ignore the 'friendly banter' of previous posters.........

Thursday is only a couple of days away - and the crack is on nearside - probably ok but to put your mind at rest, get it checked. It is hard for anyone on here to advise as we cannot see the windscreen - and some tend to get dramatic...........
Genie
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# 10
pookienoodle
Old 18-08-2009, 9:51 PM
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Thanks for all your advice,I am more concerned about the safety of my husband and child than getting a ticket.
I think it is wrong of Autoglass to say its legal without seeing the windscreen.
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# 11
Chippy Minton
Old 18-08-2009, 9:55 PM
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OP, beware the crack COULD spread!
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# 12
Hintza
Old 18-08-2009, 10:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pookienoodle View Post
Thanks for all your advice,I am more concerned about the safety of my husband and child than getting a ticket.
I think it is wrong of Autoglass to say its legal without seeing the windscreen.
Well get a taxi then!
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# 13
pookienoodle
Old 18-08-2009, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hintza View Post
Well get a taxi then!
It would be about £15 each way to the hospital,care to lend me the money?
your comment was so helpful you seem like the generous type.
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# 14
pookienoodle
Old 18-08-2009, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chippy Minton View Post
OP, beware the crack COULD spread!
Thanks I don't think I will risk it.
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# 15
Ian W
Old 18-08-2009, 10:34 PM
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Why not re-contact your insurers in the morning, explain your need to use the vehicle before AG can replace, your concerns about safety & legality and ask if they have an alternative approved supplier for such occasions?

If not, will they allow you to use a supplier of your own choosing without the usual limits for non-approved glass repairs or alternatively (if your policy provides for one) supply a courtesy car as you consider yours to be unroadworthy due to an insured peril until it's fixed.
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# 16
pookienoodle
Old 18-08-2009, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian W View Post
Why not re-contact your insurers in the morning, explain your need to use the vehicle before AG can replace, your concerns about safety & legality and ask if they have an alternative approved supplier for such occasions?

If not, will they allow you to use a supplier of your own choosing without the usual limits for non-approved glass repairs or alternatively (if your policy provides for one) supply a courtesy car as you consider yours to be unroadworthy due to an insured peril until it's fixed.
Thank you for your reply.
Already tried all of the above unfortunatly the policy is with kwikfit underwritten by ABC and they will not budge.
they told me I am free to use an unauthorised supplier but the excess will be more than the usual £60 and it will count as a claim and lead to a loss of no claims bonus,likewise using a courtesy car will count as a claim.
Does it usually take 48 hrs to get a windscreen replaced?
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# 17
scbk
Old 18-08-2009, 11:16 PM
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Just phone a local windscreen company who might be able to help you quicker, although since it would then be weds morning they might not be able to do much better than autoglass's thursday if they're busy or dont have the screen in stock
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# 18
sanjaymaz
Old 19-08-2009, 12:10 AM
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If the crack was too big for Autoglass to repair it, then it cannot be deemed as safe.
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# 19
Mark Hewitt
Old 19-08-2009, 11:04 AM
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Is it within the 'swept area', i.e. is it within the area that your windscreen wipers covers. If it is then don't drive. If it isn't and it's a minor chip then it's not an MOT failure AFAIK.
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# 20
pookienoodle
Old 19-08-2009, 3:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Hewitt View Post
Is it within the 'swept area', i.e. is it within the area that your windscreen wipers covers. If it is then don't drive. If it isn't and it's a minor chip then it's not an MOT failure AFAIK.
It certainly an mot failure.
I am not going to drive it until fixed,Ii was just suprised when Autoglass told me it was safe and legal to drive with it,they are aware it is too large to be repaired as they have charged me the excess for a replacement.
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