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Road Salt Shortage Puts Michigan Drivers at Risk

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Road salt is a mixed blessing. Anyone who has driven in Michigan over the years knows the toll this gritty material can take on a vehicle’s paint job. All the cars on the road begin to resemble one another with their rusty, gray exteriors. On the other hand, road salt is a crucial weapon in the fight against treacherous icy roads.

According to a recent story in the Jackson Citizen Patriot, a lack of road salt could result in hazardous road conditions for Michgian drivers. This year’s massive snowfall and repeated freeze-thaw cycles have taxed municipalities’ ability to keep Michigan roads safely salted. As a result, the roads remain slick and dangerous. Automobile accidents in Michigan are common in these conditions, and often have tragic consequences.

Motorists in suburbs and outlying rural areas are at the greatest risk of injury from the imminent salt shortfall. Major cities such as Detroit are turning down requests from other Michigan communities to share road salt resources. Oddly, the shortage looms despite the fact that Michigan salt mines produce a large percentage of the nation’s road salt.

In order to help avoid automobile accidents and alleviate dangerous road conditions, some Michigan counties are scrambling to add sand to their dwindling salt supply. While sand helps improve traction, it does little to remove ice and snow.

Drive slow and proceed with caution to help avoid injury. When the winter weather is at its worst, even the most diligent drivers are at risk.