MUNCIE, Ind. (WISH) – Central Indiana communities are experiencing problems getting new shipments of salt to treat roads.
Many get their salt from a national supplier, Cargill. Cargill officials said Friday customers are experiencing shipment delays due to high demand, and extreme weather.
In Anderson, officials say they briefly ran out of salt, and had to scramble to find new vendors.
In Muncie, officials decided not to wait for shipments to come to them this week. Instead, they sent their own trucks to get salt themselves – from a private individual in St. Joseph, Michigan.
“When he said he had 1,600 tons of salt he could let loose, I said, we’ll take it,” explained Duke Campbell, Muncie Streets Superintendent.
Campbell sent 12 of the city’s trucks and two private contractors Friday morning all the way to St. Joseph, Michigan. It’s a move to get salt, he doesn’t remember doing ever before.
Mayor Dennis Tyler says they’ll pay $25 more per ton of salt for these trips to Michigan, which he says isn’t that bad.
Also, “The cost is the wear and tear of the equipment, the fuel expense, paying the drivers to go up and get it, but we feel we have a responsibility to keep our streets as clear as we can,” explained Tyler.
They haven’t crunched the numbers yet for this expensive winter, but, with the governor making a disaster declaration for the recent winter storm, Tyler says he’s hoping to recover some money through Homeland Security or FEMA.
“This winter is making an old man, a little bit older right now,” said Duke Campbell, Muncie Streets Superintendent. “It seems like we’re in a twelve round title fight and I think it’s going into about 14 rounds right now.”
Muncie’s trucks will head back on Monday to Michigan, to get more loads.
They’re also waiting a shipment from Cargill, that national supplier.
In Indianapolis, the city is also getting new deliveries from multiple different vendors.
A spokesperson said she expected about 1,000 tons of salt to come in Friday from different vendors.
Indy has used 42,000 tons of salt so far. That’s 9,000 tons more than a typical winter.