5 On Your Side

A warning to drivers: Clean snow, ice off your car

Posted January 9, 2017 5:26 p.m. EST
Updated July 12, 2018 2:13 p.m. EDT

As many determined drivers prepare to hit the road after being cooped up during the winter storm - a helpful reminder - clean off your car.

Last January, Kayla Acklie was driving on Capital Boulevard in Wake Forest when a chunk of ice broke loose from the back window of a passing car and hurtled toward her.

"It lifted off of his car and went flying through the air. It was completely airborne," Acklie said. "I could see it turning in the air. It was a huge piece of ice. You couldn't miss it."

Other people who have had a similar experiences sent their photos to 5 on Your Side, but now, people want to know the best way to clean off their vehicle.

  • You can start by using your car and its defrosters. Then try a good ice scraper.
  • Warm water can also help speed up the process, but make sure it is lukewarm - if it is too hot it could crack the glass.
  • De-icing spray can also be purchased, but tests found that the spray was not very effective on thick ice.
  • Next time, try covering windows with a towel, sheet, or piece of cardboard before dew or ice arrives. Use your wipers to keep it in place.
  • Use a broom or brush to remove snow and ice from the roof and trunk.

In some states, not clearing off a vehicle can end in a fine.

North Carolina has no official laws, but the Highway Patrol urges common sense.