Icy Weather Strains Northwest Arkansas Road Crews

Posted: February 5, 2014 at 5 a.m.

An Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department snow plow clears School Street Tuesday morning in south Fayetteville. Northwest Arkansas received a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow throughout the day.

Three waves of winter weather in as many months are pushing Northwest Arkansas road crews to their resources’ limits, which could hinder work in the near future, officials said Tuesday.

At A Glance

Tools Of The Trade

Grit/Gravel: Adds traction to ice or packed snow but does nothing to melt it. Washington County uses only limestone gravel — no salt.

Salt/Brine: Salt lowers ice’s melting point to about 15 degrees and is most effective if put down before freezing begins and isn’t washed away by rain or snowmelt.

Beet Juice: Used by several cities and the state, beet juice can amplify salt’s effects and push ice’s melting point to between zero and minus 25 degrees.

Source: Staff Report

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