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Driver dies after large bolt smashes through windshield

HOUSTON – A driver on Highway 146 was killed Thursday afternoon when a large bolt smashed through his windshield and hit his neck, according to La Porte police.

Police said the the driver, identified as 60-year-old Paul Hoffman, of a Ford SUV was struck in the neck by a 10-inch long industrial-sized bolt. 

Maryann Murphy was driving by the accident and said the hole in the windshield was large.

“On the windshield there was a hole about this big, almost dead where the driver would have been”, Murphy said.

Emergency crews attempted to help Hoffman, who was stopped along the guardrail in the 2300 block of Highway 146 south near Wharton Weems Boulevard. 

Hoffman, of Pasadena, was rushed to Clear Lake Regional Hospital, but was pronounced dead at the emergency room.

La Porte police said that the bolt cut a clean hole in the windshield and hit Hoffman at a tremendous amount of speed.

The bolt is believed to be from a retaining pin for containers to attach to flatbed trailers, and might have come from a truck trailer traveling northbound, then hit Hoffman's vehicle traveling southbound, police said.

La Porte police are asking witnesses to come forward to help identify the truck. Anyone with information is asked to call La Porte Police Department at 281-471-2141, and mention case number 1700837.