Created: 02/24/2014 3:39 PM KSTP.com By: Scott Theisen
Road salt is loaded into a snow plow truck equipped with a salt spreader.
Photo: Photo: AP/Andrew A. Nelles, File
Last week's storm was nasty by most Minnesotans' standards, but road salt researchers at Minnesota State University in Mankato think it was perfect.
Civil engineering professor Steve Druschel and two of his students went under a bridge to collect samples of murky road melt from the highway above.
Druschel is leading research on the best times and ways for Minnesota Department of Transportation drivers to lay down anti-icing solutions and salt to get the most effective snow removal and highest safety.
He tells The Free Press of Mankato finding the most cost-effective way to use chemicals is increasingly important. Rock salt prices have spiked recently because of shortages. He says magnesium chloride solution can cost up to twice as much and doesn't provide double the melting for the price.
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