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Ask a Trooper: Remove snow, frost from all vehicle windows

Question: I noticed a car, the other day with the windows so frosted up that the driver had to roll down a window to check for cars coming from the side. What is the law on frosted windows and snow on a vehicle when it is being driven?...

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I highly recommend that all windows be cleared. Many people remove the snow from the windows but leave it piled high on the engine hood. If all the snow is not removed, when a vehicle reaches highway speeds some snow can be blown from the vehicle and sucked into the fresh air intake area of your car. (Normally located near the bottom of the front windshield) This can result in an instant moisture fog up on the inside of your windows and windshield. BrainerdDispatch.con Illustration

Question: I noticed a car, the other day with the windows so frosted up that the driver had to roll down a window to check for cars coming from the side. What is the law on frosted windows and snow on a vehicle when it is being driven?

Answer: There is a law in Minnesota that says no person shall drive any motor vehicle with the windshield or front side windows covered with steam or frost to such an extent as to prevent proper vision.

While the statute does not mention the rear windows, I highly recommend that all windows be cleared. Many people remove the snow from the windows but leave it piled high on the engine hood. If all the snow is not removed, when a vehicle reaches highway speeds some snow can be blown from the vehicle and sucked into the fresh air intake area of your car. (Normally located near the bottom of the front windshield) This can result in an instant moisture fog up on the inside of your windows and windshield. Try to make sure you get all the snow/ice removed from your vehicle. This will increase your visibility and it could help you avoid a crash.

Defrost, scrape and clear all the windows on your vehicle prior to driving, so you can see from all angles.

Remember to slow down when the road conditions become poor as your stopping distance can be greatly increased.

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If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Sgt. Neil Dickenson, Minnesota State Patrol, 1131 Mesaba Ave., Duluth, MN, 55811; on Twitter @MSPPIO_NE; or by email at neil.dickenson@state.mn.us .

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