Minnesota Department of Transportation Urges Motorists To Drive Safely In Winter Conditions
The Minnesota Department of Transportation, the National Weather Service, and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety are advising motorists to prepare for winter weather conditions if they plan on driving.
According to a release from the Minnesota Department of Transportation, motorists should prepare for snow-covered and icy road conditions in parts of Minnesota starting Tuesday afternoon as a winter storm is expected to bring significant snow and winds to the region through Wednesday morning, which means Thanksgiving travel could be difficult.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for much of central, northeast, and southern Minnesota and a Winter Advisory for a number of Minnesota counties.
According to the release, forecasts suggest snowfall amounts could reach six to nine inches in some areas of the state beginning Tuesday afternoon, and wind gusts of 35 to 40 miles per hour causing blowing snow with whiteout conditions could follow.
The Minnesota Department of Public Safety suggests that drivers and passengers are all dressed for the cold weather and “keep blankets, water, food, phone chargers and an emergency kit inside your vehicle.”
MnDot is encouraging motorists to check their website at 511mn.org before they travel to see current road conditions and view highway and snowplow cameras along their route. Hundreds of snowplow operators will be working during the winter storm, so motorists should remember to stay back at least 10 car lengths and use extra caution when driving near snowplows.
“We want motorists to be prepared for the changing road conditions to be sure their drive is safe and uneventful this holiday weekend,” said Jed Falgren, acting MnDOT state maintenance engineer. “When driving near snowplows, motorists should remember to be patient and give our operators room to work so that they can improve road conditions.”
Motorists should remember to:
- Stay alert for snowplows, which turn or exit frequently and often with little warning. They also may travel over centerlines or partially in traffic to further improve road conditions.
- Don’t drive distracted
- Stay back at least 10 car lengths behind the plow. Don’t drive into a snow cloud.
- Slow down to a safe speed for current conditions.
- Turn on your headlights and wear your seat belt.
- Turn off the cruise control.
- Be patient and remember snowplows are working to improve road conditions for your trip.