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Winter wallop wreaks havoc on roads

The Winter Storm Warning issued by the National Weather Service expired at 6 p.m. Wednesday, but evidence in the form of snow and ice was still all over the ground and the roadways, creating a mess for drivers and law enforcement officers, like Iowa State Patrol’s Trooper Dan Loussaert.

“You share the roadways with a lot of people who are not making the best choices and those people can affect our safety because we’re sharing the roadway with those people,” said Loussaert.

At the height of the winter wallop, he said there were more than a dozen accidents on area highways and multiple reports of cars in ditches.

What started out as rain early in the morning turned into a wet, heavy snow and then a heavy blanket of white.

All day long, drivers had to navigate the mess.

In order to safely get around, Trooper Dan suggests not speeding and especially now that it’s getting colder and the winds are expected to pick up, be mindful of black ice.

“The black ice will usually form in the wheel tracks first, if you offset the wheel track, a lot of times the traction will be a little better.”

We’re expecting temperatures to dip to as low as minus 15 overnight Thursday.

That means, if you have to get out in your car be prepared in case you go off the road.

Be sure to have with you basics, like a coat, hat, boots, a blanket and a phone to call for help and whatever you do, don’t leave your vehicle.

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