Pull Aside, Stay Alive

Pull Aside, Stay Alive

June 13, 2014

Are you ready for Monsoon season?

It starts this Sunday and brings with it the increased chance of high winds, blowing dust and other conditions that can really impact your drive.

Knowing what to do when a dust storm hits is vital, which is why we want to again remind everyone of our “Pull Aside, Stay Alive” message.

The importance of that message is certainly apparent in the powerful video above, in which you’ll hear a first-hand account of just how quickly conditions can change when a dust storm is on the horizon.

We want to make sure you’re prepared, so we invite you to review these safety tips (you can also find them on

  • 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 a travel lane or in the emergency lane; look for a safe place to pull completely off the paved portion of the roadway.
  • 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 seatbelts 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.

DPS Officer Carrick Cook says it best in the video above...

“It’s decisions to go into dust storms that cause those types of crashes and we’re trying to encourage motorists to not even enter it – don’t even run the risk,” he says. “People that continue to go through a dust storm, knowing that it’s there, are recklessly doing that. Zero visibility is the worst-case scenario. There’s no reasonable speed, when you can’t see.”

For more information on dust storms, please visit and check out some of our previous blog posts. We also want to invite you to participate in our dust storm online survey.

As always, drivers planning trips are urged to monitor travel conditions by calling 511, or by visiting You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Stay safe and remember to Pull Aside, Stay Alive!