MnDOT Experiencing Salt Surplus So Far This Winter

January 11, 2018 06:24 PM

The Minnesota Department of Transportation maintains massive mounds of salt all over the state.

But so far this winter, those piles haven't seen much use.


Through the end of December, plow drivers spread roughly 69,000 tons of salt throughout Minnesota. While that may sound like a lot, it's actually about 10,000 fewer tons than average, according to MnDOT figures.

RELATED: Commute Alert: Blowing Snow Could Make for Messy Evening Drive

"We go through a pretty intricate process of analyzing the air temperature, analyzing the pavement temperature, taking a look at the precipitation, and determining, 'OK, how much salt will it take at these temperatures to do what we need it to do,'" explained MnDOT spokesperson Kevin Gutknecht, who added that for much of this winter conditions haven't been right.

"Winter is not scheduled," he said. "It's not predictable."

Having a salt surplus isn't necessarily a bad thing. MnDOT actually has more than 200,000 tons of salt under contract for the season.

It doesn't go bad, so if it's not used this year, Gutknecht said it can be used next winter instead.

"Remember, winter is not over until it's over and we've got a while to go," Gutknecht cautioned, before smiling and adding

"So talk to me in May about how much salt we use this year."


Josh Rosenthal

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