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Rock Salt Still The Best De-Icer

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(credit: Jupiter Images)

(credit: Jupiter Images)

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — What’s the best chemical for melting ice on our highways? The Minnesota Department of Transportation commissioned a study on the question. The findings suggest we’ve been down this road before.

Engineering professor Steve Druschel of Minnesota State-Mankato University headed the study to determine the most effective de-icer for the money and the findings are familiar.

“We found that, when you boil it all down, if it’s warmer — meaning above 15 or 20 degrees — rock salt or salt brine, the traditional products, are the most cost-effective,” said Druschel.

NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Steve Murphy Reports

When temperatures are below 15 degrees, other chemicals are more effective, but also more expensive.

The findings were presented at a symposium sponsored by the Fresh Water Society.

Professor Druschel says while everyone is concerned about the quality of our lakes, no one is comfortable in cutting back on salt use for now, when you consider the alternative: icy roads that can lead to deadly accidents.

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