Iowa DOT News Release

Beware of frost-covered roads and bridges overnight

Posted on: December 29, 2009

AMES, Iowa – Dec. 29, 2009; 5 p.m. update – The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) is reporting that widespread frost is expected overnight, which may cause roads and bridges to become slick several hours before any new snow begins to fall.  


Slick roadways and bridges can be expected around midnight tonight in southern Iowa, and then through the rest of the state by Wednesday, sometime between 3 to 4 a.m., which is about 4 or 5 hours before the snow will begin.


The Iowa DOT reminds motorists to follow these safety tips when driving on slick or icy roads.


·  Ice and snow, take it slow. Do not turn your vehicle into an “off-road vehicle” by

   driving too fast for conditions.


·  Avoid excessive maneuvers while steering, braking or accelerating to lessen

   the chances of losing control of the vehicle.


·   Slow down when approaching intersections, off-ramps, overpasses, bridges or

   shady spots. These are all candidates for developing black ice — a thin

   coating of clear ice that can form on the pavement surface that may be

   difficult to see.


·  Put additional room between your vehicle and the one ahead so that you have

   safe stopping distance.


·   Do not take chances when pulling out in front of approaching vehicles.

   Remember, the other driver may be unable to slow down and you may not be

   able to accelerate as quickly as on dry pavement.


·   Avoid using cruise control.


·   Wear your seatbelt – all persons, all seating positions and at all times.


·   Give your full attention to your driving.


·   Allow extra travel time. Better late than never.


·   Handling skids – it is possible to steer out of a skid. Once you feel your vehicle

   begin to skid:


1.    Remove your foot from the accelerator.

2.    Do not attempt to brake.

3.    Put your vehicle into neutral.

4.    Do not try to immediately steer the vehicle.

5.    As your vehicle’s tires grab the road, slowly turn the steering wheel

  in the direction you want your front wheels to go.


To plan ahead, call 511 or visit for the latest road conditions.




Media contact: Dena Gray-Fisher, 515-290-1637 or


Iowa highway in the evening