Snow Control

Salt brine Minnesota
Case Studies October 24, 2017
The city of St. Cloud and county of Anoka in Minnesota were both looking to enhance the performance of their salt brine operations. In 2015, St. Cloud used over 81,000 gal of salt brine and purchased 2,290 tons of salt. Anoka County is responsible for maintaining and clearing snow and ice from 423...
paraffin oil mix

Researchers from Drexel University, Purdue University and Oregon State University have discovered that adding paraffin oil to the mix for road concrete can give it the ability to melt ice and snow when temperatures fall. 

Image: Drexel University

Article September 28, 2017
Drexel University researchers have recently made a discovery that could create roads that deice themselves during winter storms. The secret? Adding a little paraffin wax to the road's concrete mix.   In a paper published for the journal Cement and Concrete Composites, researchers, led by Yaghoob...
woven snow fence
Article September 06, 2017
According to the University of Minnesota, the topography and winter climate for a large portion of the Land of 10,000 Lakes causes the state to be particularly vulnerable to blowing and drifting snow on roadways.   This reality puts a particularly heavy burden on the state’s winter maintenance...
Alaska winter maintenance
Article September 06, 2017
Many have heard the saying, “A smart person learns from his or her own mistakes while a wise person learns from the mistakes of others.”   Heeding this advice is certainly wise for any winter maintenance professional, but it is equally important to learn from the successes of others. In the face of...
News December 19, 2016
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) has announced plans to begin using rock salt to augment its use of magnesium chloride solution for ice and snow control on roads across the state.   Specific problem areas, such as steep hills, will get the rock salt to speed melting and improve...

Photo source: MDOT via Mining Journal

News December 19, 2016
The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) is banking on connected vehicle technology to help clear snow and ice from roadways faster. GPS-based automatic vehicle location devices, which the agency began installing on its winter road maintenance equipment in 2013, report where each truck is,...
News October 10, 2016
Visit our homepage and take this week's poll question, which looks ahead to winter and considers what protocols ought to be top-of-the-pile for agencies.
News March 24, 2016
The only road leading to Alaska’s North Slope oil fields is at risk of severe flooding during the coming spring thaw. Climate experts believe the conditions will be similar to those that intermittently closed portions of the remote highway for more than two months in 2015.   State transportation...
News January 25, 2016
A snowstorm dumped as much as 20-30 in. of snow in some states like New York, Maryland and Virginia this past weekend shut down major roadways and public transit for much of the weekend.  Snow plows are still working to clear and deice roadways, and transit is slowly returning to normal operation...
News December 30, 2015
Officials within the Alaska Department of Transportation (ALDOT) are looking at budget cuts outlined in Governor Bill Walker's recently published state budget proposal in advance of a pending legislative session. Cuts that may well have a significant impact on the agency’s ability to address...
News November 23, 2015
The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) is testing new GPS technology in Southwest Michigan to help the public track of what major roadways snowplows are working on this winter.   Using GPS technology, members of the public will be able to see the location of plow trucks and where salt is...

Photo courtesy of the Virginia DOT.

Article February 06, 2015
During the winter season the state of Vermont becomes a playground drawing people from across the country to enjoy activities such as skiing, snowboarding and snowmobiling. Unfortunately, the very same snow and ice that creates a winter wonderland in the mountains also creates a winter gauntlet on...
Article March 06, 2013
Road weather sensors are widely used in road weather information system (RWIS) applications and, to a lesser extent, as components of recent weather-responsive advanced transportation systems. Sensors that focus on the condition of the roadway pavement are generally of two types: in-pavement and...
Article November 07, 2011
  The Massachusetts Bay Transit Agency (the MBTA, or the T) will be running fewer trains in severe winter weather conditions to avoid the miscues of last winter, when thousands of passengers were stranded in the snow and cold because of equipment failures and track problems, the Boston Globe...
Article January 08, 2009
I am wondering if my garage can hold a cow. It was equipped to house horses back in the early 1900s, and you can still see the door where they dropped the hay. Maybe a crowbar and a hammer can crack it active once again, and I could get rid of one of my gas grills and that fire pit we never use and...
Article October 23, 2008
The mission of the Indiana Department of Transportation (InDOT) is to “plan, build, maintain and operate a superior transportation system enhancing safety, mobility and economic growth.” In an effort to improve the safety and mobility of the traveling public during snow and ice events, InDOT has...
Article October 23, 2008
What is a snowball’s chance in 2008-09? Many public works agencies would like to know. After a killer snow season last year, many officials found themselves tapped out of road salt before January hit. Panic is in full swing this fall, as officials brace for another thick covering of flakes and ice...
Article April 09, 2007
Remember in school when you were taught in civics class on how a bill becomes a law? And then, later, you learned, just as you did about Santa Claus, that the truth is a bit different. Your sophisticated upper-grade teachers cynically equated making laws to making sausage, advising you to enjoy the...
Article October 01, 2005
If there was ever a bridge in need of an anti-icing solution, it was the Ironwood Bridge on U.S. 20, a heavily traveled route circling South Bend, Ind. Located just 20 miles south of Lake Michigan, the bridge is susceptible to the worst winter conditions. It receives an average of 80 to 90 in. of...
Article May 10, 2005
Foooooore! Would you trust your Department of Transportation with a howitzer artillery cannon? Homeowners in Pleasant Grove, Utah, used to until their neighbor’s house was accidentally destroyed. In March, UDOT officials were firing 20-lb artillery shells in Provo Canyon, attempting to bring down a...
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