(KWWL) - Heavy snowfalls, the days after a blizzard, it would be hard for Iowans to get around without the help of DOT plow workers.
However, that job becomes much harder when their plows are out of commission. According to the DOT, there has been a high number of accidents on the roads, involving their plows.
Since October, the DOT has recorded 50 crashes, commonly caused by people driving too fast for the conditions.
No matter the damage, the plows are immediately pulled from service and scheduled for "maintenance". Depending on the results from their inspection, plows can be kept of the streets from a few hours to a few weeks.
Although 50 may seem like a small number, Operations Administer Craig Bargfrede said this can affect the speed of road crews getting their jobs done and making it safer for the rest of us.
"It can easily, very easily, add extra time to the length and the return time if you will of getting that whole route completed, it can be anywhere from an hour to two or three hours," Bargfrede said.
During storms, crews are trying to clear the roads around the clock and need all the help they can get. Therefore, Bargfrede urges drivers to keep their focus on the roads.
"When we set up a plow, its set up to either operate in the left hand lane or the right hand lane," Bargfrede said, "I can't just switch a plow that's set up to operate in the left hand lane to now all of the sudden shift over to the right hand lane"
Noticing a lot of accidents are caused by distracted drivers, Bargfrede also urges drivers to slow down and put down the phone.