Local law enforcement urges drivers to be prepared for winter storm

Local law enforcement urges drivers to be prepared for winter storm

Winter weather conditions are heading to Siouxland and it could cause some significant inconveniences if you're not cautious.

I spoke with local law enforcement and the Iowa Department of Transportation who urges drivers, to review your winter storm plans before heading out on the road.

When it comes to driving safely in a winter storm, you've probably heard it all.

Keep blankets, extra sets of clothing, socks, and other supplies close by, including, high energy snacks and bottles of water.

Woodbury County Sheriff's Deputy Frederick Beckman, said, if possible, plan to minimize travel.

"The key is to not accelerate or decelerate too quickly. The normal three, to four, to five seconds interval between vehicles, you need to expand that to anywhere between eight to ten seconds, given the condition of the roads," said Beckman.

Freezing rain and sleet make roads risky and driving hazardous. And when it gets worse, drivers could become stranded. In that situation, Beckman said never leave the vehicle. Instead, stay inside and wait for help.

"Call 911 and we will get there and we will provide assistance, whether it be provide a tow truck or give them additional protection in our vehicle from that," said Beckman.

According the American Red Cross, if a driver faces that situation, run the engine occasionally to keep warm and leave the overhead light on when the engine is running, in order to be seen, until help arrives.

"We will absolutely go out and check on all vehicles. We don't just leave vehicles sitting in the ditch, check on all vehicles just to make sure," said Beckman.

Iowa Department of Transportation officials urges everyone to be prepared and be careful for the roads conditions coming up.

"Just want to give yourself plenty of time, leave early and if you don't have to travel and the roads are bad and you can stay home, that would be great," said Todd Coghill.

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