County, Winamac ready with salt
The first few snowfalls of winter have caused a rash of accidents and slide-offs but not because of lack of plowing.
Local municipalities have been clearing the roads but with the below-freezing temperatures, anything that has melted becomes a frozen mess.
The first significant plowing of roadways began on Christmas Eve. Since then snowplows have attempted to move the snow and ice while also salting and sanding the intersections.
The county highway department maintains more than 900 miles of roadway that are divided into 15 areas. Each area has a snowplow that works to keep the roads as clear as possible.
Ideal temperature for the salt to melt the snow is about 20 degrees or more. The county mixes the salt with sand in different ratios depending on the weather temperatures. If the temperatures are warmer then not as much salt is needed.
Winamac Street Superintendent Jeremy Beckner said Winamac is only using salt on the roads at the intersections. The town hasn’t ordered salt for this year, as of yet, because of the surplus from last year.
The Town of Winamac maintains about 25 miles of roadway. When it snows, town employees will wait until some accumulation has occurred and then salt when all the snow is pushed off the roads.