Driver narrowly escapes injury as large board crashes through windshield

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When he looks at the photos of how the large plywood board stopped just inches from his face after it exploded through his windshield Tuesday morning, Chris Matheson feels lucky to be alive.

It all happened within seconds while he drove southbound on State Route 167 near Kent.

"Frankly I don't remember a whole lot about the truck ahead of me," he said. "It seemed like a large delivery truck."

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Matheson says he saw a large flat board fly off the top of the truck at 60 miles per hour, and it sailed over two lanes like a giant wobbly Frisbee.

"It was really difficult to tell where it was going to go," he said. Then, a corner of the board suddenly blasted through the middle of his windshield.

"The sound of a windshield exploding is something. It's loud."

Matheson was wearing glasses, so the flying shards of glass missed his eyes, but left tiny cuts in his skin as it sprayed in every direction.

"It was in my shoes, my hair, my ears, it's all over the car," Matheson said.

Matheson looked up the tragic story of Maria Federici in 2004, after a piece of particle board flew off a trailer through her windshield, into her face.

Federici was blinded and lost her sense of taste and smell, and she has recurring reconstructive surgeries to this day.

The next year, in 2005, "Maria's Law" was passed, making it a crime to travel with unsecured loads. Matheson hopes the driver of the truck will realize what happened, and other drivers will take the time to secure loose items on the road.

"I consider myself very lucky that nothing worse happened," he said.

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