Today (January 17) will be the first day much of the state of Iowa will have temperatures above -0. Eastern Iowa will look forward to a balmy 17 degrees today and after the past few days, I'll take it. In the next few days, eastern Iowa will see temperatures above 0 and I'm getting ready to bust out the shorts and crocs.

We learned that the state of Iowa uses brine, which is a water and salt combination, to help keep our roads clear and safer for us to drive on when we deal with the amount of snow and ice Iowa has accumulated this past week. The problem Iowa has dealt with this week is that salt generally is the most effective de-icing at 15+ degrees, according to Cargill.

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It can still help with ice and snow at temperatures below 15 just takes a lot longer. When you're trying to de-ice roads and highways, it's usually time-sensitive and the Iowa DOT is trying to get it done as fast as possible.

Well, with temperatures above 15 this afternoon, I'd imagine most of Iowa will see plow drivers laying down a layer of brine to try and get rid of the ice and compacted snow all over our roads. If you happen to be stuck behind a snow plow, can you legally go around it in the state of Iowa?

Unsplash - Dan Cook
Unsplash - Dan Cook

Can You Legally Pass a Snow Plow in Iowa?

If you find yourself behind a snow plow and you'd like to pass it, that is perfectly legal in Iowa. There are no state laws prohibiting you from doing so. Just because you can...doesn't necessarily mean you should.

Linn County Iowa reminds drivers to give snow plows a break. During snow storms, it's important to remember to treat snow plows like an emergency vehicle.

Don't stop too closely behind a stopped snowplow. The operator may be preparing to back up and may not see you. Keep a safe distance when following snow plows. This is critical because snowplows create a swirl of snow that can blind the driver of a car following too closely or cars approaching from the opposite direction.

Linn County Iowa also mentions if you want to pass a snow plow, you shouldn't. Unless your visibility is clear and it is completely safe for the plow driver, you, and other vehicles on the road.

Snow plows can have front blades that extend anywhere from 2 to 10 feet wider than the width of the truck, which can make it hard to know if you really do have enough room to safely pass.

If Iowa notices a few more snow plows on the road today, with the temperatures finally hitting the teens, remember to give the plows a break. They're trying to keep the roads safe for you, your family, and other drivers on the road.

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

Iowans Show Off Their Most Beautiful Photos of the State

Gallery Credit: Courtlin


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