Iowa DOT News Release

Use Caution When Driving Around Snowplows #iatraffic

Posted on: February 26, 2013

AMES, Iowa – Feb, 26, 2013; 1 p.m. update – Snowfall totals are adding up in parts of Iowa. That means several hundred Iowa Department of Transportation, county and city snowplows are on the road to clear the wintry mess for afternoon commuters.

Here are a few tips when approaching, following or passing a snowplow.

  • Snowplows generally operate at much slower speeds than other traffic.
  • Snowplows can be forced sideways when clearing hard-packed drifts and generate a "snow cloud" that may impair the vision of drivers in nearby vehicles.
  • Remain a safe distance behind the snowplow, pass only when clear and never continue to drive alongside a plow.
  • Allow plenty of space when passing a snowplow because the wing of the plow blade extends out to the side of the truck.
  • Do not cut back into the lane of traffic too soon in front of a snowplow truck because the blade also extends in front of the truck.

Remember the slogans, “Ice and Snow … Take It Slow” and “Don’t crowd the plow.”


For traveler information anytime, visit, call 511 (within Iowa) or 800-288-1047 (nationwide). Be part of Iowa’s traffic information social media network. Help others by sharing your travel experience, photos and video once you have stopped in a safe location. Use the hashtag #iatraffic and mention @iowadot in your posts. Do not attempt to use mobile devices while driving.


Iowa highway in the evening