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Wipe Snow Off Your Vehicles, Or It Might Cost You

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(credit: CBS) Matt Brickman
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – When snow hits, there are some — and you know who you are — who clear just enough to see out of the windshield. But it’s more than just a matter of courtesy to our fellow drivers.

There’s certainly a wrong way to clear off your car after it snows. In this case, taking the path of least resistance, could cost you big.

In fact, there is a statute on the books in Minnesota that lays out your responsibilities when it comes to brushing snow from your car.

“You’re required to have your front windshield and front side windows clear as to not obstruct vision in any way,” said Minnesota State Patrol’s Lt. Eric Roeske.

What it doesn’t mention is the snow on your roof or rear windows. So, while that’s recommended, you’re not legally required to clear it off.

“We recommend, it’s not maybe the easiest thing, to do, but to get all that loose snow removed from the vehicles,” said Roeske.

Roeske says it doesn’t take to much time to do, so there’s really no excuse.

“Sometimes people are in a hurry or they forget, or they think that their defrosters will work quick enough,” said Roeske. “If you can’t see out your windows, you’re not only putting yourself, but everyone else on the road, in jeopardy.”

There is a statute on the books that could interpret snow or ice falling off vehicles as littering, which would be a misdemeanor.

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