Official State of Iowa Website Here is how you know

Winter Driving Tips

Car driving on snowy road.

Winter driving tips


Winter driving conditions arrived early this year in Iowa. The Iowa State Patrol recommends these tips as you take to the roads this season:

  1. Keep windshields clear - Scrape snow and ice to ensure full visibility.
  2. Increase following distance - Put five to six seconds of time between you and the vehicle you're following - especially snow plows. 
  3. Be patient - Allow more time - and daylight if possible - to get to your destination, and remember that detouring through a median typically causes problems.
  4. Always pay attention to the road - Traffic flow can change instantly and braking times increase dramatically with snow or ice.
  5. Add braking time to exit freeways and interstates - Exits and overpasses get slick during winter events and require even more braking time.
  6. Know when not to use cruise control - Don't use cruise control on snow and ice conditions.
  7. Prepare a winter survival kit - Pack the items below to help you endure an emergency or road closure until help arrives.
  8. Turn on headlights - It's critical to be seen on snowy and foggy days.  


"Whenever you come across slick areas like exits and overpasses,
slow down and pay attention before you get to that area, and don't
try to instantly brake. That's when we see a lot of crashes."

- Iowa State Patrol Public Information Officer, Alex Dinkla

Iowa graphic showing supplies to keep in your car during winter travel, such as a flashlight, First aid kit, cellphone charter, water/snacks, ice scraper/snowbrush, music/gtames, jumper cables and boots/gloves/warm clothes.