Trucker Suffers Bloody “Face Full of Glass” After Cinderblock Thrown From Overpass
Salem, NJ – A 37-year-old Piscataway trucker is fortunate to be alive after a cinderblock was hurled from a New Jersey Turnpike overpass and smashed his windshield last Thursday night.
Dennis Gilbert, owner of GreenView Landsculpting, was operating his 2005 Peterbilt and hauling a load of trees northbound along the NJ Turnpike at mile marker 5 when at approximately 10:30 p.m. he traveled over the Delaware Memorial Bridge.
As he approached the Penns Grove Auburn Road overpass at about 70 mph, Gilbert says he noticed two young men standing near a pickup truck along the overpass.
“Something about the truck caught my eyes,” Gilbert told Transportation Nation Network (TNN). “Somebody on the overpass was looking through the fence.”
The next thing he knew he had a “face and eyes full of glass” after a cinderblock hung from the bridge by an orange and black rope smashed his windshield.
“It was like an explosion in my cab,” Gilbert recalled to TNN. “The impact was so hard I thought I hit a parked car in the slow lane,” he later wrote in a social media post about the incident.
Fortunately, the concrete block struck his truck’s “annoyingly low visor” which he credits with “probably” saving his life.
The cinderblock then ricocheted off of Gilbert’s rig and smashed into another big rig’s windshield.
Even though the sudden crash left him disoriented, Gilbert was able to get his rig safely to the side of the road without causing another crash.
The other trucker involved also safely stopped his rig and then positioned his truck in the slow lane to shield Gilbert from oncoming traffic.
Gilbert says his face was bleeding significantly as the fellow trucker, thankfully uninjured, rushed to his aid.
Gilbert then says he got out of his truck still wondering what had just happened.
“My face is literally covered in glass and I ask, ‘Did I kill somebody?'”
Though he did not get the driver’s name, Gilbert says the unidentified trucker poured water in his eyes and waited with him for about 25 minutes until first responders arrived to the scene.
“With this coronavirus stuff I was surprised he even came up to me,” Gilbert said.
After a while, he says the reality of what had actually happened began to set in as first responders picked the glass out of his eyes, face, and scalp.
“It was a lot to handle. My eyes are still sore. I feel like I have sand in them,” he explained to TNN.
While no arrests have yet been made in the case, Gilbert says he is hopeful authorities will bring whoever did this to justice.
TNN will continue to follow new developments.