Iowa Truck Insurance: The Trucking Hazards of Winter

Winter driving is hazardous for all motor vehicles and especially so for large tractor-trailer rigs. Eighty thousand pounds of truck doesn’t stop on a dime even in the summer, let alone on a snow and ice-covered road during a snow storm. Any attempts at hard braking or swerving in these conditions will only initiate a jackknife followed by a trucking accident that can devastate or cause a big financial setback to your trucking business.

Make sure you have enough Iowa commercial or owner operator truck insurance coverage to handle civil lawsuits, property damage, as well as damage to your truck and cargo that may arise from a trucking accident. Winter trucking in Iowa is fraught with hazards, which include:

Black Ice

Your tires will have virtually no traction on black ice, which doesn’t necessarily require a storm or precipitation to form. Pooled water from a clogged road drain or water runoff across the road can become ice once the pavement temperature drops below freezing. It frequently forms on bridges and overpasses. To compound the danger, black ice is difficult to visually detect.

Snow Squalls and Untreated Roads

Snow squalls are sudden brief outbreaks of snowfall, which shouldn’t be any more hazardous than ordinary snowstorms, provided the roads are already treated with salt and sand. However, early season snow squalls can occur when roads lack this treatment. This sets the stage for traffic pileup accidents caused by motorists and truckers who fail to anticipate the very slippery conditions produced by this kind of weather event on untreated roads.


Heavy snowfall combined with blowing snow across the road can reduce visibility to near zero. This exacerbates the dangers of slippery road surfaces caused by snow and ice buildup. During snowy conditions, you should double your normal following distance. However, you should slow to a crawl during whiteouts and get off the road as soon as it’s safe.

It’s best to avoid these hazards altogether by planning your trips around extreme winter weather. Leave extra early or late to avoid being on the road during the height of these storms. Keep your window washing fluid reservoir filled and set up your GPS before hitting the road.

Finally, contact us at J.E.B. Insurance Services to ensure your Iowa commercial or owner operator truck insurance coverage is up to snuff for the winter. We also provide commercial truck insurance in the states of Florida, Georgia, Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Illinois & Nebraska.

David Ott

David Ott