Twin Falls Police urge safe winter car practices

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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - As the windows get frosty and the temperature keeps dropping, the Twin Falls Police Department wants to make sure motorists are being safe before hitting the road.

Scraping windshields are required, otherwise drivers can be given a $90 ticket for obstruction to their view or driving mechanism.

"Its not just the windshield. You have to have the side windows and the back windows all clear of ice, dust and snow," said Sgt. Ryan Howe, with Twin Falls Police.

Scraping small holes just for the driver to see is unacceptable.

"It’s gotta be clear, because then people can see better, drive safer," Howe said. "They can see hazards on the road, maybe pedestrians or other cars."

Not only can a motorist receive a ticket, Howe said they can get points on their license.

"If you don’t scrape your windshield, it’s the same points as speeding. It’s the same points as running a stop sign," he said.

Being a little more prepared in the mornings can save time and money.

"It’s a lot less time than that than dealing with a collision. It’s a lot less expensive to buy a ice scraper," he explained.

Howe said that if motorists are in a hurry and know there will be snow, they can put a blanket on the windshield.

"You can take that blanket off and the snow comes off with it and the ice comes off with it, and you don’t get the frost setting on your windshield," he said.

However, drivers can't scrape their windshields if they don't have a car. Howe urges to be careful while turning the car on in the morning to warm up.

"My assumption is they drive by, they see the exhaust," he said referring to criminals who could steal idle cars.

It is not illegal to leave a car running, Howe told KMVT.

"But if you do have your car running, you are required to make sure that the park brake is set and that it is locked," he said.

If there is snow on the road or potential for ice, Howe urges drivers to slow down.

"Just do everything a little bit slower and you’ll be a lot safer," he continued. "Don’t think 'Hey, I'm a safe driver, I've been driving in the snow for years,' because those are the guys that get into collisions."

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