Transportation Cabinet is in "Conservation Mode" with its salt.

By: Eric Eckstrom Email
By: Eric Eckstrom Email

Officials with Kentucky’s Transportation Cabinet say the winter weather continues to create issues when it comes to stocking an adequate supply of salt.

We spoke with members with the Cabinet to discuss data released Friday.
Kentucky has gone through quite a bit of salt this winter, and officials with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet are saying the numbers are well above average.

“In an average year in the entire state of Kentucky, the Transportation Cabinet will use between 200,000 and 250,000 tons of salt. Here we are the first week of February and we've already used 300,000 tons of salt,” says H.B. Elkins, public information officer for the Transportation Cabinet.

This is why officials say they are implementing conservation efforts moving forward.

“What we will do is use less salt. We will apply it less frequently. We will rely more on plowing than salting, and we will concentrate on our high priority routes,” Elkins said.

Officials say route priority is determined by traffic volume. The highest priority is interstates and parkways, and rural routes are the lowest; and while supplies are low, officials stationed in Perry County say they can still handle a few more storms before currently available supplies deplete.

“As our County stands right now, we're capable of handling three or four more heavy snows,” says Claude Cooper, a highway superintendent.

Officials are saying that while it's too early to hit the panic button, the sooner we get out of this unseasonable winter, the better.
Officials say they began the winter with 60,000 tons of “emergency reserve” salt, a number which as of Friday has dwindled down to 26,000 tons.

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