Q: I see many vehicles driving down the road with ice and snow coming off of them. What is the law about clearing ice and snow from your vehicle prior to driving?
A: Ice or any type of debris that comes off a vehicle could be considered an unsecured load. The law says that no vehicle shall be moved on a roadway, unless the load is securely covered to prevent any leaking, blowing, shifting or dropping.
Drivers should also be concerned about civil liability if they fail to take reasonable steps to remove snow and ice that result in property damage or injuries from a crash. When traveling behind a vehicle with an unsecure load or ice/snow falling from it, give yourself plenty of room behind the vehicle to avoid any obstacles that may fall off and strike your vehicle. If possible, go around or pass the vehicle when it is safe to do so.
If you are involved in this type of incident where your vehicle is damaged and/or crashes as a result from falling debris, try to get a license plate number and report it to law enforcement and your insurance company.
Please take the time to remove all snow, ice and items that may come off your vehicle so it does not become a hazardous situation on the roadway. Also, clear all frost, snow and ice from all windows so the driver is able to safely see from all angles.
Send your questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota to email@example.com or Sgt. Neil Dickenson – Minnesota State Patrol at 1131 Mesaba Ave., Duluth, MN 55811