Plenty of salt on hand to treat roads
A scene we've seen very little of this winter: except in the case of an early February snowstorm, state highway snow and ice removal vehicles have mostly stayed in their garages. And the salt storage buildings have remained full.
"We usually use 20,000 tons in a normal winter," says Justin Smith, District #3 engineer, West Virginia Division of Highways, "and we're only projected to use half that much, 10,000 tons this winter."
That could mean a surplus even if there is another storm before the statistical end of the season on March 31.
"And that's really a good thing for us and the taxpayers," says Ashley Rittenhouse, Spokeswoman, Ohio Department of Transportation District 10, "because we can use the money we would have spent on salt to do other maintenance activities. "Our barns have plenty of salt, and we will be able to use that next winter, whatever we have left over."
Another advantage from the mild winter-and the low salt usage-less damage to streets and roadways.
"You still have occasional potholes," Smith says, "but with the fewer freeze and thaw cycles we've had this year, which is temperatures below 32 degrees, I think the potholes are a lot less this year."
So, assuming that furry weather prognosticator in Pennsylvania was correct, late winter will be a lot less icy-and bumpy-than in the past.