Clearcreek Township Officials Address Regional Salt Shortage

After this week’s snow and ice event, and in preparation for tonight’s expected weather, we wanted to take a minute to explain our plan of attack for the coming weather.

Road salt availability is becoming an issue in ALL surrounding communities. The fact is, our supplier this year, Cargill Inc., located along the Ohio River on the western edge of downtown Cincinnati, is out of salt. They have to rely on barges to deliver salt to that distribution facility – and they’re simply out of inventory. 

Several area jurisdictions and municipalities that we spoke to today are in a similar position, with limited supplies for their own use, and no replenishments in sight from their suppliers.

With the limited supply, we are using road salt more sparingly than we typically do when treating our roads. We don’t want to, but the fact is, we have to. We have to make certain that we don’t completely run out of salt before more arrives. This includes limiting the amount of salt we throw on subdivision streets – typically lower speed, flatter streets. They won’t be cleared curb-to-curb like you’re used to absent salt, but we will keep them passable, at least, particularly those subdivision streets that have some grade to them. If your subdivision street is flat, however, we’ll most likely plow a path on-center to keep it passable during the weather event, widen the path once the snow event has passed, but NOT throw salt as is typical. Please use caution and good judgment in such areas.

We believe we have enough salt on hand to manage tonight’s expected weather, however, we will LIKELY have to resort to cutting our road salt with sand in future events if we do not receive more supply. While not ideal for the roads, runoff, or equipment, salt mixed with sand will allow us to reduce the amount of salt we throw, and provide for at least some traction on an otherwise snow covered and icy road. 

We wanted to post this to explain why our approach may look a little different than we typically operate going forward. As always, we sincerely appreciate our citizens’ patience, understanding, and sound judgment while driving. While we hope to return to our ‘normal’ treatment regimen that our citizens have rightly come to expect from our crews, our approach will look a little different as winter hopefully winds down. 

* This story was written by Clearcreek Township staff. 

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