Sparta Police: Flying Shards Like 'Projectiles'

SPARTA, N.J. (CBS 2) — Imagine driving and suddenly you’re bombarded by flying ice and shards of glass. That’s what happened to one driver because someone in front of her didn’t remove snow and ice from his truck.

It’s the law in New Jersey and it’s a reminder as the next storm approaches, reports CBS 2’s Christine Sloan.

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The thick sheet of ice went through the windshield of a Jeep Wrangler, showering the driver, Cheryl Hubere, with shattered glass.

“She got some glass in her eyes and in her mouth and in her scalp and stuff,” said Tom Perkins, the victim’s husband.

Police said ice that injured Hubere came off of a John Heine Plumbing truck, which they pulled over and ticketed under a new law that holds drivers responsible if ice or snow flies off of their cars.

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Police showed Sloan a view inside the plumbing truck and of what appeared to be more ice that had yet to fall off.

“He was unaware the ice had come off his vehicle,” Sparta Police Sgt. John-Paul Beebe said.

Sloan caught up with the owner of John Heine Plumbing, who initially said he “had no idea” about the incident.

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Police said they issued a summons to Kristopher J. Heine, the 28-year-old son of the owner.

“I feel terrible. Cops won’t tell us who it was. We can’t even send her a fruit basket or anything to say we’re sorry,” the owner said.

The husband of the injured woman said a hat somehow protected her face, preventing what could have been more serious injuries.

“She seems fine right now, but she has a headache and some blurred vision,” the husband said.

“The ice comes off … it’s like projectiles. They just don’t strike your car, they penetrate it,” Sgt. Beebe said.

While Heine won’t be charged criminally, he faces up to a $1,000 fine.

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Police said if a driver of a car is aware of ice or snow flying off and hitting another car, and they flee the scene, they can be charged with assault by a vehicle.