Submitted Media Release

The County of Brant has approximately 1150 km of roads. During a snow or ice storm, roads may quickly become treacherous for drivers.

The County’s winter road management plan includes anti-icing and using salt, sand or a combination of both. Salt is a cost-effective material and when applied in a timely manner, prevents snow and ice from bonding to the road surface.

“Salt is often spread early in an event to reduce ice formation and to aid in snow removal operations,” said Mike Tout, Director of Roads for the County of Brant.

In some areas, anti-icing liquids may be applied directly to the pavement in anticipation of the pending event. The material dries on the road surface and is reactivated later by moisture from the event precipitation.

The effectiveness of road salt is assisted by the sun, traffic and warmer daytime temperatures.

“Salt is less effective when temperatures drop below minus 12 degrees Celsius. That is why bare pavement can be difficult to restore in extremely low temperatures,” said Tout.

Sand is used to provide traction on slippery surfaces. Unlike salt, it does not melt snow and ice. Sand is used most often when temperatures are too low for salt to be effective.

“Sand is also used at higher temperatures if traction is required immediately, particularly on hills, curves, bridges, intersections and snow-packed roads,” said Tout.

The County of Brant is investigating ways to control and reduce the use of salt and its impact on the environment, while ensuring road safety.

Winter storms kill more Canadians than tornadoes, thunderstorms, lightening, floods and hurricanes combined. For information on how to prepare for a winter storm visit: www.brant.ca/emergencyplanning. The County’s website offers winter storm preparedness information, links to an interactive road condition map and a checklist for your car emergency kit.