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Iowa Department of Public Safety
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Des Moines, Iowa 50319
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Monday, February 8, 2010  

Snow Followed by High Winds Translates into Dangerous Driving Conditions

Des Moines, IOWA— Once again the state of Iowa is being covered with nearly a foot of fresh snow.  Though the large, fluffy flakes are picturesque, they wreak havoc on Iowa roadways when followed by high winds, as predicted for tomorrow, Tuesday, February 9, 2010.

The Iowa State Patrol is encouraging motorists to keep a close eye on Iowa road conditions as the snow comes down and the winds pick up.  This in-coming storm appears to be very similar to the one Iowa experience on January 25-26, 2010.  During that storm, blowing snow reduced visibility on Iowa roadways, causing many crashes, including a 40 car pile-up that closed Interstate 35 for more than a day. 

Over the next two days, consider very carefully whether travel is necessary.  Check the www.511ia.org or dial 5-1-1 on your touch tone telephone to keep up to date on the latest road conditions.  Winter road condition information is uploaded to both the web site and phone system regularly by the Iowa State Patrol as Troopers travel throughout the state, taking note of the changing road conditions.

Remember, safety should be your number one priority.

  • Avoid travel whenever possible.
  • Reduce speeds to accommodate for lack of control or visibility.
  • Increase following distance to 8-10 seconds between cars.
  • Remember, 4 wheel drive doesn’t help you on slick roads.
  • Never use cruise control.
  • Be particularly careful of bridges and overpasses where ice accumulates more quickly.
  • Heed all travel warnings.  Never drive on closed roads.
  • Call 9-1-1 if you are involved in an accident or put your car in the ditch.
  • Never leave your vehicle after an accident.  Wait for assistance to come to you.

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