Salt Shortage at County Engineer’s Office

by Courtney Wheaton on January 24, 2014 at 6:57 am

The Muskingum County Engineer’s office is finding innovative ways to stretch their winter salt supply.

Muskingum County Engineer, Doug Davis says that every year his office is given a estimated 4.9 million dollar budget. He says they are carefully rationing the amount of money they use on salt in order to have funds left over for summer projects.

"We have one budget. That budget pays for salt, pays for sand, pays for tires, pays for fuel, pays for bridges, pays for asphalt, pays for oil for chip and seal, pays for mowing. That is only only one budget, " said Davis.

Davis says that the increase in snow events has led them to approximately 6,000 tons of salt so far. He says we are only half way through the winter and expects to use even more in the future. In order to get the most out of their supply, the office mixes salt with other materials to keep county roads safe.

"We are mixing more sand with the cinders that we were able to get , ad we are also mixing sand with salt. We also use brine water and we will take 400 ton bins that we have at the engineer’s office full of sand and flood it with about 3,000 gallons of salt water," said Davis.

Officials from the engineer’s office urge drivers to use caution and to be aware of left over sand on the road. He says sand can give you traction during snow events, but once it melts left over sand can cause you to slide if driving too fast.