The Iowa Department of Transportation is warning travelers about unsafe driving conditions that will arise from a winter storm predicted to hit Iowa Wednesday night into Thursday.
The DOT says travel is not advised for most of the state from 8:00 p.m. Wednesday through noon on Thursday.
Blizzard conditions are expected because of heavy snowfall of up to 10 inches in some areas and winds as strong as 45 miles per hour. The blowing snow could create drifting on roads and white-out conditions.
Though drivers are being advised to stay off the roads, if they must travel the DOT has some safety tips:
- Use your mobile phone to call 911 for emergency assistance. Guide emergency personnel to your location by observing any exit numbers, mileposts, crossroads or landmarks.
- Pull as far off the road as possible to avoid getting hit by other vehicles.
- Turn on your vehicle’s warning/flashing lights.
- Remain with your vehicle. Your vehicle provides the shelter necessary to survive and allows you to be found by rescue personnel.
- Remain calm and be patient. It may take considerable time for someone to reach your vehicle during a storm as emergency personnel typically are assisting multiple persons.
- Make sure your vehicle’s gas tank is full before starting your trip. If you become stranded, run your vehicle about 10 minutes every hour to stay warm.
- Crack a window in the vehicle to avoid carbon monoxide build-up; and clear away any snow from the vehicle’s tailpipe so the exhaust can escape.
- Utilize the resources in your winter survival kit.
You can check the road conditions in Iowa and surrounding states here.