Advertisement

Moncton looks at changing salt mines after mineral from Saint John area not quite ‘up to snuff’

Click to play video: 'City looks at changing salt mines after mineral from Saint John not quite ‘up to snuff’'
City looks at changing salt mines after mineral from Saint John not quite ‘up to snuff’
WATCH: Moncton continues to field calls and complaints from the public claiming the streets are slipperier than last winter. Morganne Campbell has the story – Jan 11, 2018

It’s all hands on deck as city crews clear away what they can before freezing rain and snow pelts Moncton and its surrounding areas over the weekend.

In an effort to combat Mother Nature, city officials will be using a different road salt supply out of Pugwash, N.S., following calls and complaints on social media about the city’s previous salt, which came from a mine in the Saint John area.

“For some odd reason, it doesn’t seem to be as effective on our streets,” explained Isabelle LeBlanc, a spokesperson for the city.

READ MORE: Rising cost of road salt prompts Moncton to reduce use this winter

Public works crews are studying how salt from the first source was reacting on streets and sidewalks. They have been testing moisture levels, checking to see if it clumped easily, and examining how it worked in the spinners used to disburse the mineral.

Story continues below advertisement

“All that we know is that our experienced operators that have been on the job 20-plus years did notice that it wasn’t reacting, wasn’t performing as what they had noticed in past years,” LeBlanc said.

WATCH: Workers call on transportation minister to overhaul winter maintenance program

Click to play video: 'Workers call on transportation minister to overhaul winter maintenance program'
Workers call on transportation minister to overhaul winter maintenance program

It wasn’t just operators taking notice that the product wasn’t working. Many residents raised their concerns with local councillors and online.

“Terrible, except Main Street. Main Street is excellent because they put a lot of salt, and there’s a lot of traffic,” said local resident Carol Ermen, as she waited for a bus on Main Street.

After the Sussex mine closed last year, municipalities depending on that source had to go elsewhere. Moncton chose a mine in the Saint John area, but that could change depending on the trial run with the mine in Pugwash.

Story continues below advertisement

“I guess sometimes if the supply isn’t what you want it to be, you look for other supplies that may give you better results,” said city Coun. Greg Turner.

READ MORE: Why do we still use road salt and what are the alternatives?

In the past three weeks, the city says it used 25 per cent of the salt it has for 2018.

Residents, city staff and councillors will have an opportunity to talk salt on Monday night during a public council meeting at Moncton City Hall.

Sponsored content