The New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) will be monitoring roadway conditions with law enforcement as high wind advisories have been issued by the National Weather Service. The NMDOT would like to remind the traveling public that blowing dust can escalate to blinding dust storms as they move quickly through remote areas. If you must travel, we recommend that you monitor local forecast conditions prior to starting your trip, and visit our web site as roadway conditions change throughout the state of New Mexico.
Roadway advisories will be posted on www.nmroads.com, or by calling 511. If you are approaching a dust storm or caught in a dust storm, the below tips can help keep you safe.
- Avoid driving into or through a dust storm.
- Do not wait until poor visibility makes it difficult to safely pull off the roadway — do it as soon as possible. Completely exit the highway if you can.
- If you encounter a dust storm, check traffic immediately around your vehicle (front, back and to the side) and begin slowing down.
- Do not stop in the roadway; pull completely out of the travel lanes and as far into the right shoulder as possible.
- Stop the vehicle in a position ensuring it is a safe distance from the main roadway and away from where other vehicles may travel.
- Turn off all vehicle lights, including your emergency flashers.
- Set your emergency brake and take your foot off the brake.
- Stay in the vehicle with your seat belts buckled and wait for the storm to pass.
- Drivers of high-profile vehicles should be especially aware of changing weather conditions and travel at reduced speeds.