Snowy and windy conditions with periodic gusts up to 40 mph are expected on Sunday, especially for areas south of Interstate 80. The Iowa Department of Transportation reminds motorists that even small amounts of snowfall coupled with high winds can cause hazardous driving conditions.
Once snow begins to fall the Iowa DOT will be working to clear roads, but blowing snow can cause roadways to quickly become re-covered after trucks pass through and visibility to become greatly reduced.
Iowa DOT reminds travelers that trips during severe winter weather can take three or four times longer than normal. Motorists are urged to monitor weather and road conditions before traveling and evaluate the necessity of each trip during poor driving conditions. Log on to http://511ia.org/ for the latest road conditions, towing restrictions, and snowplow locations and photos.
If you must travel Sunday and early Monday, please consider the following recommendations:
Focus your attention on the driving task. Put your phone away.
Slow down and allow extra travel time.
Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and others on the road.
Buckle up everyone in the vehicle – back seat passengers, too.
Do not use cruise control.
Take extra care if driving a high-profile vehicle such as a truck, van or sports utility vehicle, or when towing a trailer, as these vehicles are more prone to be pushed or even flipped by wind gusts.
Turn on your headlights to see and be seen.
Keep your windshield clear of ice.
If conditions are severe enough to prevent safe driving, postpone your trip. If you’re already on the road, pull over to a safe place until road conditions improve.
If you are in a crash, it might seem natural to get out of your vehicle to assess the damage. However, during winter weather, especially during blowing snow where visibility can be reduced safety experts recommend remaining inside your vehicle with your seat belt fastened until help arrives, especially if you’re on a busy roadway.