With more wintery weather in the weekend forecast, the state is stepping up attention to its website devoted to road warriors. Iowa Public Safety spokeswoman Jessica Lown recommends before you hit the highway, log on to the website: IowaRoadConditions.org .
Lown says, "If the road is highlighted in red, that means it’s poor driving conditions. If it’s highlighted in green, that means it’s normal driving conditions. It’s really easy. You just use that simple key off to the left of your screen and you can look at the roads and find out where you can travel and where you definitely shouldn’t."
Iowa’s Highway Patrol officers spend most of their days –and nights– on the state’s roads and they’re now tasked with contributing traffic tips. Lown says, "Our state troopers start adding information about road conditions that relate to weather — if it’s icy, if there’s a bridge that’s got frost on it and you might not expect it to be slippery, but it is — all that kind of information you can access on the website, and call 511, to get winter weather road conditions."
She says this year’s early departure of fall and the premature arrival of snowflakes pushed Public Safety into fast action. "We ramped up the 511 weather road condition reporting early because we’ve had so many forecasted days of slick roads and icky, gooey weather. We wanted to make sure that the website and 511 was working, right now, so that people could access it when they needed it."
The calendar says winter won’t officially arrive for more than five weeks on December 21st.