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Tips for Driving in Iowa Winter Weather

This winter in Iowa has been a typical one: lots of snow and ice. We all know that those weather conditions make driving more dangerous, and unsafe driving in winter weather can cause collisions and injuries. The surest way to prevent an auto accident this winter is to stay off the roads when it is snowy or icy. If your travel is essential, do what you can to stay safe and practice good winter driving techniques. Here is a list of winter driving tips to keep your travels safe this winter.

1. Decrease your speed and leave yourself plenty of room to stop. Iowa law requires that you drive at a “careful and prudent speed no greater or less than is reasonable and proper” taking into account factors such as visibility and the condition of the roads. During winter weather, it may be necessary to go far less than the posted speed limit to stay within a “careful and prudent” speed given the conditions.

2. Turn on your headlights. Iowa law requires the use of headlights when the visibility is 500 feet or less. Using headlights when there is snow, sleet, or fog gives you better visibility and more time to react to obstacles in the road. It also makes you more visible to other motorists.

3. Use chains or snow tires (also called “winter tires”). Iowa law allows the use of chains on tires when required for safety because of snow, ice, or other conditions that cause a car to skid. Snow tires are allowed by law from November 1 through April 1.

4. Be especially careful on bridges. The portion over the road will be the first to freeze and the last to melt, and may be slippery even if the roads are generally clear.

5. Do not pump anti-lock brakes. Anti-lock breaks work best when you “stomp and steer.” For other brakes, be sure to let up if your brakes lock.

If you are injured in a collision due to Iowa’s winter weather this year, be sure to promptly seek legal advice. The attorneys of Brady Preston Gronlund PC are personal injury attorneys who have extensive experience litigating car accident, truck accident, and motorcycle accident cases. If you need the help of an experienced Iowa car, truck, or motorcycle accident, call us today at 319.866.9277.

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