You Cannot Legally Do What in Your Car Here in Iowa?
If you're planning to see the state of Iowa this spring (assuming spring ever arrives), you may wish to save money and sleep in your car. It's not ideal, but it's cheap, right? Well, there are a few unique rules when it comes to sleeping in your car as it pertains to the state of Iowa. So be sure you know what these rules are before you crash... poor choice of words, sorry. Before you sleep in your vehicle.
- In Iowa, you cannot sleep in your car if it's parked at a Walmart parking lot.
While legal in many states, according to Sleep Insider, it's not allowed in the Hawkeye state. I did check with Walmart's official policy, and unless you're in an RV, you're likely not allowed to park for the night at any Walmart. But rules there get dicey. In Iowa though, it's a no-go.
- In Iowa, you cannot sleep in your car if you're intoxicated
While it's way smarter to crawl into the rear of your car and sleep off intoxication, it's still technically illegal. The law is clear on this: the vehicle does not have to be in motion and, as long as you're drunk and in the vehicle, you can get an OWI. Spellman Law out of Des Moines has a very detailed write-up on this. In a nutshell, the Iowa Supreme Court made it sound like if the keys aren't in the ignition, you're ok... but why chance it? Why even deal with an OWI temporarily even if you can knock it off your record. Best to phone an Uber and get your car the next day once your sober. Oh, and don't sleep in the Uber either...
- In Iowa, you can spend a night sleeping in your car at a rest area.
Good news: You can spend one night at an Iowa rest stop as long as you're not breaking any laws. i.e., don't roam around naked at the rest stop like you might in your bedroom. This according to Iowa law. Also, unless there's a crazy circumstance like severe weather, you've gotta go after one night. Some other Midwest states, such as Minnesota, prohibit this and require you to move along well before you've hit the 24-hour mark.
- In Iowa, you can drive naked
Well ok, I wouldn't try this. Especially when it's cold. But, I searched and searched, and found no specific law against ridin' nekked. Be warned: getting in and out of your car san clothing is very illegal so, plan ahead my naked friend.
So there you have it. Some Iowa rules of the road! Did I miss any? Please reach out and let me know if you feel I did.