Several kilometres of roads in downtown Montreal were covered in road salt Monday.
A city vehicle mistakenly spread the salt on the dry roads as the driver headed back to the public works garage.
Officials say the salt drop was accidental — the truck had a mechanical problem with its spreader, leading to the salt being released.
“The spreaders were always on the ‘on’ position because the spreaders were broken,” city spokesperson Philippe Sabourin told Global News.
The driver was initially called to four different water main breaks to spread salt and prevent black ice from forming.
Sabourin says at some point during that time, the truck’s spreader broke, but such accidents are considered rare.
“It’s very unusual to have one of our spreaders with a problem with this piece of equipment,” Sabourin said.
Millions of tons of salt are used every year to keep Montreal’s streets clear of ice and snow.
Sabourin says a minimal amount of salt was dropped during the incident.
“Maybe we lost a few bags of salt,” he said.
The truck has since been repaired.