With much of eastern Iowa seeing snow fall reach 8 or more inches today, the best idea when it comes to traveling in blizzard conditions is to...not travel. It's best to simply sit back, get some inside chores done, shovel/snowplow your driveway, and stay at home. If possible, keep your car parked, and consider it a day off from errands/travel.

If you're in a situation in which travel is necessary, like some type of emergency, the first thing you can do is check 511IA. This is the Iowa DOT website that can show you the road conditions and possibly be used to help finding a safer route.

If this means traveling 10 or 15 minutes out of your way because the roads are a safer option, you should take the extra time. Once you've checked the conditions for the roads in your area and believe you have found the safest route possible, remember these important tips from the Iowa Governor's Traffic Safety Bureau.

First you should make sure your tires are properly inflated and are in the right condition for winter driving. You can easily check your tire thread by using a penny.

If you have to travel, obviously remember to wear a seatbelt and slow down. That's winter driving 101. Two of the biggest forgotten winter driving habits are never use cruise control and to not switch lanes unless absolutely necessary.

Cruise Control and Changing Lanes

If a road is wet or covered in snow, your cruise control can cause the vehicle to hydroplane or skid, according to AAA. A surefire way to end up in a ditch is spinning or skidding out of control.. When we see massive amount of snow like we have today (January 1), there's no way to predict when you could receive help. It could be minutes or it could be hours.

The same would go for changing lanes, unless you're 100% sure your car can find asphalt, driving over the build up of, snow in the middle of the lane, can result in your car skidding or slipping, which could lead to an accident.


If you do find yourself in an emergency; call for help, remain inside the vehicle, move your vehicle to the should if you can, and make sure your exhaust pipe is clear of any blockage if you feel the need to run your car.

Once again, if you can stay at home during blizzard conditions like today, just stay at home. When was the last time you cleaned under your couch and/or behind your refrigerator? Use your time at home to get those annoying chores done instead of running any errands.

LOOK: Biggest snowfalls recorded in Iowa history

Stacker compiled a list of the biggest 1-day snowfalls in Iowa using data from the National Centers for Environmental Information.

Gallery Credit: Stacker


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