The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

March 4, 2013

Snow and ice? Salt’s ready to go

ANDERSON, Ind. —  If you haven’t been watching the news, listening to the radio or reading the newspaper, you may be surprised if you walk outside your home Tuesday to find the ground covered in snow.

But surprise wasn’t a factor for city and county road crews. They were ready for it Monday.

The National Weather Service at Indianapolis issued a winter storm warning for Madison County on Monday afternoon. It’s in effect from 7 a.m. Tuesday to 7 a.m. Wednesday with a possibility of 3 to 6 inches of snow and sleet.

“It’s a tossup,” city Street Commissioner Brad Land said Monday afternoon. “We don’t know what to expect, but there’s a possibility of heavy snow, so we’re ready.”

Both city and county road departments have more than enough salt in preparation.

Highway Superintendent Scott Harless said his department just got 200 tons of salt last week. He noted the department buys in bulk and typically purchases 700 tons a season at $62 a ton.

“The last couple of years have been unusual,” he said of the snowfall and salt usage.

The area has seen milder winters requiring less salt, and Harless said they usually have enough to fill up a barn for the next year’s season.

Land said his department also bought salt while it could at a reduced rate. The city had some salt leftover from last year and will again have some for the start of next year’s winter season, he added.  

Harless said it’s not unusual to get snow this time of year, but with the warmer temperatures, it likely won’t stick around for long.

Both he and Land believe it may be the last big winter storm of the season. At least they hope so.

Harless said it usually comes around boys basketball sectionals, jokingly adding that it hit late this time.

His department put out brine Monday and had 12 big plow trucks along with two pickup trucks ready to go early Tuesday morning. Land said the city had eight trucks loaded and ready to go. If need be, the Snow Task Force will also be called out.

The wintry mix was expected to become intense early Tuesday morning and decrease in coverage and intensity late Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.

“Roads and surfaces will become slippery and snow covered,” the National Weather Service advised. “Travel may become difficult or hazardous.”

Find Dani Palmer on Facebook and @DaniPalmer_THB on Twitter, or call 640-4847.

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